Fortuna High's Morandi earns 3rd place in NCS singles tennis; Husky exchange student ran off with HDN title

Mark Lourenzo

Beacon Correspondent

Fortuna High foreign exchange student Pedro Morandi finished off an excellent prep tennis season by placing 3rd at the recently completed North Coast Section, Division 2 boys singles championships. Morandi, who hails from Brazil, first had to earn an Humboldt-Del Norte championship to be eligible and did so with a victory in the #1 singles bracket back in April. That win not only gave him a title, it also meant that he finished the H-DN campaign unbeaten locally. From there Morandi attended the section playoffs held at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco back on May 3rd through the 4th. Earning a 1st round win over Lick-Wilmerding's Jacob Shaw by a score of 6-1, 6-3, he moved on to the 2nd round of play.

Pedro Morandi faced a very strong opponent in Michael Guzman from Justin Sienna High School and fell in the semifinal round by a score of 6-2, 6-1. Guzman put an end to Morandi's season and went on to win the Division 2 singles championship. For Morandi it was a bittersweet ending but a incredible season as he got to play his favorite sport at the highest levels during his time here in America. Morandi's win back in mid April at the H-DN championships held at Del Norte High came at the expense of Eureka's Max Bass. The score in the finals read 6-1, 6-3. The semifinal round was even tougher as Morandi lost a set to St. Bernard's Sam Yang, but then came back strong for the 6-2, 5-7, 6-4 win.

Morandi wasn't the only local tennis player to make some noise this past season. Fortuna High No. 2 seed John Gearhart made it all the way to the H-DN title match where he came up short to Eureka's Josh Hancock (6-0, 6-4). The Husky double team of Curtis Hohman/Joseph Caminiti made it to the title match at the No. 3 seed and Fortuna's Kyle Frank and Austin Thomsen got to the title match in No. 2 doubles play. Both teams came short of a H-DN title but a fine showing none-the-less. Also it was huge how Ferndale High's Nicole Vollmer came on late in the season as a girl playing boys high school tennis. Vollmer won matches late in the regular season then earned an H-DN championship at the #4 singles seed with her 6-3, 6-1 win over Eureka's Calder Hutchins in the title tilt.