BTen: Rams pocket key TVL win over Thacher

Cate kept alive its hopes for a Tri-Valley League championship in its first season playing in the conference by defeating Thacher on Tuesday 10-8.

The Rams avenged an earlier loss to the Toads, who had been undefeated in league play. Cate and Thacher are traditional rivals who were both elevated to the TVL this season.

“Without question, this was the team’s best , and most balanced, win of the season,” said Rams head coach Bob Bonning.

The match was close throughout, not being decided until the final round. The two teams were knotted up at 3-3 and 6-6 after the first two rounds.

Cate’s top doubles team, Michael Netteshein and Christian Herman, won a crucial tiebreaker on its way to a three-set sweep 7-6 [5], 6-0, 6-2.

Kevin Ha and Jason Xiao were the backbone of the Rams’ lineup, taking three sets each in singles. Edward Cho’s 7-6 victory in the final round gave the Rams the extra point they needed. Cate would have prevailed in a match tiebreaker, holding an 85-68 advantage in total games.

Cate (7-5, 4-1) faces St. Bonaventure on Saturday in Carpinteria.