The Santa Monica College Corsairs needed some time, but they eventually came through with a 5-0 victory over the Grossmont Griffins in the state semifinals on Wednesday.
SMC lost the first set in three of their singles matches. Then the second sets started and the Corsairs turned it around. Gwendolyn Kauffman won 3-6, 6-3, 6-1 in No. 5 singles over Jami Thomas.
Then Criss Rodriguez used a 1-6 loss in the first set as fuel to come right back 1-6, 6-4, 6-3 to beat Sharon Reibstein.
Corsairs Krystal Hansard, Jutta Collet and Hanna Sacher all defeated their opponents handily, and the match was retired.
“It was close and we pulled out some tough three-setters to end it in singles before we played doubles, which was really cool,” said SMC tennis coach Richard Goldenson.
There was no need to complete the compelling No. 1 singles match between Katerina Mozolyuk and Jazmin Ortiz.
“I’d like to see them play it out, and I’m glad they didn’t,” said Goldenson, who said Mozolyuk played seven matches last weekend at the Ojai Valley Tennis Tournament.
Mozolyuk and the team will have time to rest before their championship match on Thursday, May 12, in Fresno against the undefeated Sierra Wolverines.