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Published October 27th, 2021
Campo tennis coach lauds captains who brought team together
Claire Ross Photos Gint Federas

Campolindo girls tennis coach Sunun Faulkner had to be a quick study for the Cougars, taking over the position 16 years ago when her senior daughter, Ellie, had no coach. Sunun had no experience in coaching and had played lacrosse for Connecticut College before graduating from Yale with a dual major in Art and East Asian Studies.
Originally from Korea, she was familiar with the sport from being Campolindo's team manager while her daughters were on the team and playing recreationally at Moraga Country Club. Ellie went on to play Division I tennis at University of San Diego, while her sister Claire, who also played tennis at Campolindo, played club lacrosse at USD.
The Cougars boast a solid team, with their four returning senior team captains leading the way, finishing the regular season 9-1 in league and 14-2 overall.
Claire Ross is their No. 1 singles player, with Francesca Restrepo in the No. 1 doubles position. Emma Bornadi joins Francesca on the doubles while Marissa Karver is the No. 5 singles player.
About her four captains, Faulkner says, "These team leaders are some of the best set of captains I've ever had. They are excellent in motivating the other players, setting a good example, and mentoring the other girls. They're a great help to the coaching staff."
Ross, who has been the Cougars' No. 1 player for the last two years, first started following the team in fourth grade when her sister was a freshman and drew pictures of herself as a Campo player.
Junior Alex Goette is the No. 2 singles and Faulkner calls her the most improved player on the team, with Sophia Raldugina-Zhu, a tall, lanky freshman at No. 3 singles who has been "a nice surprise with her abilities," says Faulkner.
Rounding out the competitors are No. 4 singles Paige Davis, a junior who will be playing lacrosse at UC Davis after she graduates, and the No. 2 doubles team of Dilara Basegmez and Liesel Hilkemeyer, both juniors.
In all, the Cougars will lose six seniors this year from their roster of 15.
After helping as a full-time volunteer coach for 15 years, Steve Robinson recently moved to Reno. He still comes around when he can, but Jimmy Scott has taken over as full-time assistant coach. Scott, a Miramonte graduate, has previously coached boy's varsity and girls JV. "We work well together," says Faulkner, "and I'm so glad to have him help."
About the team, Faulkner says, "The whole team always shows up to practice and works together as equals, which is rare these days." She also adds that the parent help has been amazing.
DAL-Foothill league singles and doubles championships were scheduled to be held this week. All three Lamorinda girls high school teams look forward to the NCS championships, with Campolindo and Miramonte, who finished first and second in the DAL-Foothill division, competing in Division I, while third place Acalanes is hopeful of a spot in Division II. NCS team playoffs begin Nov. 9, while singles and doubles competition start on Nov. 15.

Francesca Restrepo Photos Gint Federas
Emma Bornadi Photos Gint Federas

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