Senior night for Metea Valley badminton as the Mustangs host Neuqua Valley. Both teams dealing with injuries as Shruti Panse is out for the Wildcats while Metea senior Sophia Wang will rest her ankle to prepare for the post season. This highlight is sponsored by BMO Harris Bank.
So we begin with two doubles, Metea Valley’s Vivian Kok playing with Ananya Saraswati with Sophia Wang on the mend. Early on the Mustangs look like they won’t miss a beat as Kok scores on the smash.
Neuqua Valley with a switched up doubles pairing as well. Wanhan Sun and Bhavi Barnwal playing well together though as Barnwal slams this one down to the floor. Wildcats take the first set 24-22.
But once again the Mustangs battling, Saraswati lofts one near the back which forces a shot into the net to keep MV in the hunt.
Neuqua ready to put this one away in the second set, Barnwal working quickly near the net, Metea trying to keep the point alive before Sun sends home the winner. Two doubles goes to the blue and gold.
Now to one doubles where Metea Valley partners Riya Alwala and Anjana Viswanathan face Cynthia Zhang and Aarushi Choudhary from Neuqua.
Mustangs in the near court and Alwala gets aggressive approaching the net and getting the first set point with a smash.
Neuqua in the near court this time, the Wildcats are ready for this one and Choudhary finishes off the point with a strong shot that can not be returned.
But Metea Valley manages to pull away, Viswanathan with a strong return from the back that deflects off a Neuqua raquet. The Mustangs take both sets in a close one 21-17, 21-19.
Now to number one singles, Bhavi Barnwal from Neuqua against Metea Valley’s Vivian Kok. Talented players who know each other well but are known more for their great success as doubles players.
Kok shows off how quickly she can cover ground by getting to the birdie quickly and tapping it over for the point. The Mustang senior wins set one 21-16.
Set two and Barnwal bounces back with some nice touch on this shot that drops just over the net for the point. The Wildcat wins set two 21-19 to force a set three.
Another tight one in set three, but Kok is able to pull it out as she gets Barnwal to reach low for a return and then finds the open floor on the other side of the court. A win at one singles for Metea badminton 21-18 in set three.
Two more familiar faces finishing up two singes. Anjana Viswanathan for Metea against Wanhan Sun for Neuqua Valley.
In the first set, Sun shows fantastic touch from the back line, lofting this shot perfectly out of reach of her counterpart.
Sun serving now in the second set after winning the first. A great volley with both players using touch and power. Eventually Viswananthan uses a strong smash for the point to win the second set, forcing another tiebreaker.
Another nice volley in set three. Sun forces the Mustang to lob a return with the backhand and drops a backhand of her own for the match winning point. Neuqua Valley wins two singles and the match overall as a team over Metea badminton on senior night. But it’s clear there is a lot of talent on both teams especially at the top of the lineups.
For more prep sports highlights, visit the Naperville Sports Weekly page!