SANTA CLARA, CA — The East Los Angeles College badminton team ended its season at the CCCAA State Championships today, going 2-2 in individual matches at Mission College.
After a first-round bye, the defending state champion ELAC doubles team won a second-round match, 21-14, 21-11, vs. freshman Jennifer Thai (San Diego Patrick Henry HS) / sophomore Majenzen Alejo Mendez (Philippines / Cavite National HS) of San Diego City College.
The ELAC team of sophomore Jean Mornelle Buenaflor (South El Monte HS) and freshman Quan Zhang (China / Beihai HS) drew the top-seed doubles team from Northern California, from Fresno City College, in the third-round for the right to advance to the quarterfinal round.
The match was the longest of the Championships. The Fresno team of sophomore Panhia Vang (Fresno Roosevelt HS) / sophomore Lucy Lor (Fresno Roosevelt HS) won the first set 21-14.
ELAC bounced back and won the second set 21-15. Fresno took the third set 21-19 to win the match 2-1. The ELAC doubles team, the heavy underdog, returns Zhang next year. Buenaflor ends her ELAC career as a state champion. She also won a state medal after winning last year’s singles consolations final.
In singles this year at state, Buenaflor defeated Irvine Valley College sophomore Abigail Oliva (Irvine HS) in the first round 22-20, 21-19. Immediately thereafter, Buenaflor faced Lor, the No. 2-seed in singles play, who had a first-round bye, but lost 21-8, 21-7.
Buenaflor finished the season 18-5 overall in singles competition.
submitted by Tadzio Garcia