MANHATTAN BEACH, CA — The East Los Angeles College Huskies badminton team won the 2016 South Coast Conference doubles championship at the SCC Individual Championships at the Manhattan Badminton Club Gymnasium.
The ELAC freshman doubles team of Jean Mornelle Buenaflor (South El Monte HS) and Serena Lieu (Sierra Vista HS) are the 2016 SCC doubles champion and advanced to the state finals.
They defeated the California Community College Athletic Association defending state champion doubles team from Pasadena City College, sophomores Rebecca Tzou and Sandra Maw. Tzou was also last year's state individual singles runner up.
The ELAC team defeated the Pasadena duo 21-10, 19-21, 23-21.
Buenaflor and Lieu have only played together in three doubles matches this season, all wins against Tzou and Maw. It was a strategy put together from ELAC Head Coach Qui Nguy.
The ELAC doubles team of Buenaflor and Vanessa “Yong Xian” Liang (Taishan No. 1 HS, China) finished the season 13-1 overall. They lost to Tzou and Maw on Feb. 19.
According to Nguy, he thought Buenaflor and Lieu’s chemistry was good enough to defeat the defending state champions, and it was.
The state individual state championships are Friday and Saturday, May 13-14 at Pasadena City College’s Hutto-Patterson Gymnasium.
Buenaflor and Lieu, the No. 1 doubles team out of the SCC will play at 1:40 p.m. on Friday. They play the winner of a match between Irvine Valley (the No. 5 team from Pacific Coast Conference) and Skyline College (the No. 6 team from No Cal’s Coast Conference).
Buenaflor and Lieu advanced out of the SCC Championships to the state singles competition as the SCC’s No. 5 and No. 6 players, respectively.
Buenaflor will play a singles match at noon against Mai Truong of San Diego Mesa College, the No. 8 player from the Pacific Coast Conference.
Lieu plays at 12:20 p.m. against Tran Pham of Grossmont College, the No. 6 player from the Pacific Coast Conference.
story submitted by Tadzio Garcia