High School Sports Bellow Can’t Help ‘Dogs
Kahree Bellow did everything in his power to help the Burbank High boys’ tennis team pull out a victory. Playing No. 1 singles for the Bulldogs, Bellow topped Glendale’s best, Ashot Papikian, 6-4, then trounced No. 2 Mike Unanian, 6-0, before blitzing No. 3 Jon Azizian, 6-1.
Bellow’s three wins still left the visiting Bulldogs on the short end of a 10-8 Pacific League match last Thursday afternoon.
Behind a rocket serve that’s been timed at 105 miles an hour, Bellow jumped out to a 4-1 lead in his match with Papikian, who rallied and took three of the next five points.
“I was moving my feet and I held my serve,’’ said Bellow, who boasts a 3.4 grade-point average, and is hoping to continue his tennis career in college. ”I was moving from side to side really well.”
Bellow, ranked 156th in the state for 18-year-olds, landed about 65 percent of his first serves against Papikian, and an equally high percentage of his second serves. There isn’t much of a drop off between the first and second serves, which comes in handy.
When Bellow faced Unanian, it was merely a case of serve and volley. Bellow’s monster serve was a problem, and if that wasn’t enough, his quick feet while rushing the net proved to be the answer.
“I’d like more of a challenge,’’ said Bellow, a senior who hails from Texas, of his encounter with Unanian. “Tennis, like a lot of sports, is all about confidence.”
The other singles matches went in Glendale’s favor. Papikian ousted No. 2 Jonathan Sanmartin, 6-1, then No. 3 Alex Lee, 6-2. Unanian took out Sanmartin, 6-3, and Lee, 6-2.
Azizian’s wins over Sanmartin, 6-3, and then Lee, 6-1, were significant.
“Jon was a big factor for us today,’’ said Glendale Head Coach Bob Davidson. “Looking back, those two wins were big.”
The Nitros (3-2 and 1-1 in league) captured only four of nine doubles matches, and allowed the Bulldogs (0-3 and 0-2 in league) to make it close.
Glendale’s No. 1 team of Jeff Asano and Elliot Kim downed No. 1 James Hong and Arthur Kubko, 6-4, then took out No. 2 Keon Park and Kenneth Banares, 6-3, and dropped No. 3 Kevin Han and Kevin Lee, 6-2.
“I thought our strength was our No. 1 doubles team,’’ said Davidson. “We don’t have the depth at No. 2 and No. 3 singles and doubles like we’ve had in the past. They’ve been inconsistent. They’re very young and inexperienced.”
Hong and Kubko powered by No. 2 Alex Levin and Edgar Hakobyan, 6-4, while Park and Banares defeated Glendale’s No. 2, 6-4, with Han and Lee earning a 6-1 win against the Nitros’ No. 2.
Hong and Kubko beat Glendale’s No. 3 doubles Rene Glandian and Sam Sarian, 6-3, while Park and Banares also won 6-3 over the Nitros’ No. 3. Glandian and Sarian worked over Han and Lee, 6-0.