Badminton: Falcons prevail against Palo Alto, but fall to Lynbrook, Milpitas

April 3, 2019 — by Sherrie Shen and Michael Wong

After returning to the De Anza Division, the Falcons are in good shape to stay in the league with a 2-4 record at the season’s midway point.

On March 28, the Falcons fell 16-14 in an away game at Milpitas, a relatively new school to the upper league.

The Falcons trailed the Trojans throughout most of the matches. The only games left to conclude were No. 1 and 2 boys’ singles, boys’ doubles and mixed doubles. Of the six games, five came down to three-set games, with No. 1 boys’ doubles winning in two games. While other No. 1 games were still playing, the Falcons ended up losing all three No. 2 games by a close margin, giving the Trojans the overall victory.

No. 1 boys’ singles  Adrian Mar, a freshman who is nationally ranked, and the No. 1 mixed doubles team of sophomore Ryan Hsiao and freshman Victoria Tso still persevered to win their matches. After Mar’s match concluded, the entire gym gathered to watch Hsiao and Tso square off against their opponents.

Senior captain Nathan Luk saw a positive side to the loss.

“While this close loss was very hard for our team, it proved that we could compete in the upper division,” he said. “Now that we’ve reached the midpoint of the season, we have a better sense of how to compete and win games.”

Two days earlier, on March 26, the Falcons faced Lynbrook at home. Due to Mar’s absence, captain junior Alvin Ren was forced to play No. 1 boys’ singles instead of No. 2. Additionally, two makeshift girls’ doubles pairs — No. 2 and No. 3 — were announced minutes before the lineup was submitted. It was also the first time No. 1 boys’ and girls’ doubles played together in competition. Despite many close, three-set games, the Falcons ultimately lost 18-12.

Right after their first win against Gunn at home on March 14, the Falcons defeated Palo Alto 20-10 in an away game on March 19. Despite missing No. 1 boys’ doubles player Nicholas Zhang, the Falcons swept all three boys’ doubles games by swapping in all three of their top singles players. As such, Mar, who traditionally plays No. 1 boys’ singles, substituted for Zhang in No. 1 boys’ doubles.

Varsity also swept all of girls’ doubles and won No. 3 boys’ singles, No. 2 girls’ singles and No. 1 and No. 3 mixed doubles. Junior varsity won 12-1, with both the Falcons and Vikings defaulting junior varsity No. 2 and 3 girls’ doubles due to a lack of players. The Vikings also had to default varsity No. 3 girls’ singles and several other junior varsity games since they did not have enough girls on the team.

“Our main focus during the rest of the season is beating the schools that we were close to but lost to and of course beating the schools we beat the first half,” Ren said. “We’re also going to work hard and see if we can try to beat the top schools.”

Due to printing deadlines, The Falcon is unable to cover the game against Cupertino on April 2.

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