By Bill Tamburrino
Playing in a league that may get the number one team seed in the Division I and Division II playoffs was tough on Division III Ramona last week. The Dawgs lost to Division I power Torrey Pines and Division II power Westview.
The Dawgs then rallied to beat Mt. Carmel and move into fourth place in the Palomar League. Coach Doug Failla used three different lineups during the week and it paid off in the end.
“Everybody picked us to finish sixth in the league but we have exceeded all expectations,” said Failla. “We are young and we are improving because we work very hard. A fourth place finish in a league that will probably produce the Division I and Division II champions is a good start for this young team.”
The team is 8-8 overall and 3-7 in league.
Failla also jokingly informed this writer that he had made an error in one of his Time Out columns. “Several people came up to me and said that I was in good shape for a guy that just turned 49. I actually just turned 45.” Sorry, Doug.
The Bulldog team finished last week on a winning note, beating Mt. Carmel 11-7 on April 29.
Failla made some key lineup changes to pull off the victory. He has been using foreign exchange Vasek Reischl as a wild card in his lineup. Against the Mount, Reischl teamed up with Garrett Hatch and the move produced three won sets and three key team points. The duo went 6-1, 6-1 and 6-2.
John Shupe and Tyler McDonald lost a close set 5-7 and then came through with scores of 6-1 and 6-0 to score two team points. Chris Page and Nick Peterson posted scores of 2-6, 3-6 and 4-6.
Cameron Ruland manned the number one singles spot in grand fashion. Ruland went 6-4, 6-0 and 6-0 to win three key team points. The left handed Daniel Streeter lost one set 2-6 but rallied big time to post scores of 6-1 and 6-0 to produce tow team points. Freshman Christian Failla also came through with a team point as he went 0-6, 1-6 and rallied for a 7-5 win.
Ramona lost to Westview High School 17-1 on the road on April 25. Westview (13-2, 5-2) is ranked fourth in the CIF.
Coach Failla changed his lineup from the first meeting with Westview, but the changes did not change the outcome of the match.
Ruland and Reischl teamed up in doubles play and scored Ramona’s only team point and played well by going 1-6, 5-7 and 6-3. Shupe and McDonald played well, going 3-6, 3-6 and 1-6. Nick Brierton and Scott Barber went 0-6 while Garrett Hatch and Chris Page went 2-6 and 0-6.
In singles play Daniel Streeter got the call in the number one spot and went 1-6, 0-6 and 1-6. Chad Martin played one set and went 5-7. Christian Failla went 0-6 and 0-6. Nick Peterson turned in scores of 0-6, 3-6 and 2-6.