Sixth title in its sights

BADMINTON At the top of the league, the Brahmas are strolling through the season with few challenges.

Emily Kim, Sports Editor

Junior Hanson Gao competes in a match against Chino Hills High School.

Already approaching a repeat of the last three undefeated seasons, the Diamond Bar High School badminton team has won by a margin of over 20 points in every match.

Head coach Kemp Wells predicts another easy season for the Brahmas, with enough players on the team to fill two full lineups. He does not foresee a challenging season as many players practice both in a club outside of school and with the school team.

“I think that the players that like it the most are the players that are new to high school badminton. But the ones that have been playing for two or three years already on the varsity level still like to play and to win but I’m sure they would like a little stiffer challenge once in awhile,” Wells said.

The Brahmas have never lost more than three sets in any match this year, placing Diamond Bar at the top of the league.

“There have been no matches that have come close this year,” Wells said. “Last year it was close at one point, but it really wasn’t anything too close where we had to worry about the threat of losing.”

To give the Brahmas opportunities to try new tactics, many players are rotated on and off the starting lineup.

According to Wells, the top mixed doubles pair amongst the Brahmas includes senior captain Justin Lam and sophomore Mirabelle Huang. The pair placed first last year for mixed doubles and have not lost a single match this year. Lam also plays with sophomore Daniel Huang in men’s doubles, winning both their sets 21-8 in a league game against Wilson.

Juniors Ambrose So and Joshua Lee have also been performing well in men’s singles. On the women’s side, junior Jasmine Huang and Mirabelle are both undefeated in singles. Wells also sees senior Gwen Wang and sophomore Angela Zhang as strong players despite the few number of matches they have played.

One of the few challenges for the team is giving all the players on the team time to compete in matches. Although six girls and boys can play in one match on the varsity level, the Brahmas usually have a greater number of players participate by mixing who plays singles and who plays doubles as well as mixed doubles.

Wells also tries to minimize the hours of practice the Brahmas do to keep their interest in the sport.

With a vast majority of them playing for clubs already doing drills outside of school practice, Wells focuses more on practice matches more than running drills.

 “If we put our best players in the match and they play close to their level we should beat most teams this year,” Wells said.