For the first time in 41 years, Bishop Montgomery High School won a CIF-Southern Section girls’ tennis championship, defeating El Toro 10-8 in the finals Nov. 9 at the Claremont Club.

The Knights’ Division 4 title was the first for the program since the four Fernandez sisters, coached by their mother, led the Knights to the 1977 CIF-SS 4-A title, and also marked the first time in 16 years that any Catholic school from the Los Angeles Archdiocese or Orange Diocese won a CIF-SS crown in girls’ tennis.

St. Bonaventure of Ventura won the Division IV title in 2002, but only five times since then had a local Catholic school even reached the finals, the last being Chaminade of West Hills in 2016.

Coached by Angel Quimson, Bishop Montgomery went unbeaten (19-0) in 2018, winning their 13th straight Del Rey League title and knocking off top-seeded Temescal Canyon in the semifinals before winning the championship. Cameron Banks and Samara Guillory won the league doubles title.

The Knights’ championship roster included seniors Natalia Cortes, Annie Elming, Natalie Galullo and Fabi Higueros; juniors Nicole Baigorrotegui, Cameron Banks, Zhen Guo and Stephanie Lew; sophomores Samantha and Samara Guillory, Diana Jimenez, Grace Okafor, Maya Pitts and Emma Tiedemann; and freshmen Lisa-Ann Agorsha and Anita Michlitsch.

Mike Nelson is the former editor of The Tidings (predecessor of Angelus News).

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