Athlete of the month: Angeline Cheng

Named to the first team all league for the last two years, DB tennis captain has high expectations for CIF.



Senior Angeline Cheng has played for both singles and doubles for the team.

Ingrid Chan, Asst. Photo Editor

As a freshman, Angeline Cheng didn’t think much of her decision to participate in three different sports: tennis, track and soccer. But soon the Diamond Bar High School student discovered that juggling the three activities as well as her grades would prove to be an extremely difficult feat.

After deciding to focus solely on tennis in her junior year, senior Cheng has already served on the varsity tennis team for three years and is now one of the team’s two captains. She and senior Zaina Siyed were selected to their position by their peers.

“It’s great because she’s exactly what I want in a tennis captain: organized, a great tennis player, and her peers recognize that,” tennis coach Alexis Feix said. “I’m able to pass on some tasks to the girls and they have no problem taking on these responsibilities.”

When she played three sports during her freshman and sophomore year, Cheng said that she didn’t have much of a social life because of the frequent practices.  Her everyday routine consisted of attending school, going to two JV practice sessions and then returning home past 8 p.m. She only had time to finish her homework before trying to sleep as much as she could.

 “Sophomore year wasn’t as difficult as freshman year. I already stopped club soccer then, so I had some more room for schedule flexibility,” Cheng said.

Once she became a junior, Cheng realized that trying to continue all three sports would be far too demanding, so she quit soccer and track in order to focus her attention on tennis.

Though she’s normally a singles player, Cheng has played doubles in CIF playoffs. But because her normal partner, junior Jaida Wilson, is unable to play this year, she’s still uncertain as to who she will pair with.

The duo was the team’s No. 1 and No. 2 doubles players; last year, they made it to the second round of CIFs together. Ever since her sophomore year, Cheng has been named to the Palomares first team all league in which both doubles and singles records are compiled. This year the tennis team is 4-2 in league after not winning any games in preseason.

“Angeline has made tremendous progress in terms of being a tennis player.  She’s always been steady and very competent, so I mostly see her fine tuning her game here and there.  I’ve seen her grow mentally as a tennis player; I’ve seen her grow a little more tough and work through things better,” Feix said.

Cheng’s most memorable match was in her junior year during league finals. She and her partner were playing against an undefeated doubles team from Ayala and were behind by three points.

 Everyone, including themselves, expected the pair to lose.  With nothing to lose and so much to gain, the pair let go of all their inhibitions and pulled off the impossible–knocking off the unbeaten.

“We were already halfway through the game when we decided to try a whole bunch of really random moves and just did a lot of experimentation in general,” Cheng said. “We really didn’t expect to win.”

Although she has played tennis for almost a decade, Cheng doesn’t plan to play for a team in college. However, she does expect to participate in intramural programs if she can, and if not that, at least continue tennis as a recreational activity.