Badminton: Matadors smash Homestead High School 30-0 in scrimmage

Badminton+coach+Eric+Liu+watches+as+Matadors+explain+the+rules+of+the+Field+House+to+both+teams+on+March+19.+The+short+introduction+is+customary+to+most+badminton+games.+Photo+by+Brandon+Chin.

Badminton coach Eric Liu watches as Matadors explain the rules of the Field House to both teams on March 19. The short introduction is customary to most badminton games. Photo by Brandon Chin.

Brandon Chin

Correction (Mar. 26): An earlier version of this article stated an incorrect upcoming match between MVHS and Saratoga High School. The Matadors next home game will be against Gunn High School on March 26.

A sharp smack sounded from Homestead High School’s side of court.

The birdie sliced through the air. It was a powerful return — one that moved blurringly fast. Had it not struck the top side of the net and fallen to the floor, it would have continued the nearly eleven minute game. Groans and applause came from the sidelines but what the HHS player would say to his Matador opponent was more surprising.

“Sorry!”

It is rare that a player apologizes for a mistake made in their opponent’s favor but none seemed surprised as it happened. The prospect of losing became clearer for the Mustangs, yet the matches still continued in a respectful manner.

Badminton coach Eric Liu watches as Matadors explain the rules of the Field House to both teams on March 19. The short introduction is customary to most badminton games. Photo by Brandon Chin.
Badminton coach Eric Liu watches as Matadors explain the rules of the Field House to both teams on March 19. The short introduction is customary to most badminton games. Photo by Brandon Chin.

MVHS badminton hosted its first home game on March 19 against HHS. With a final score of 30-0, it was a sweep and an expected victory. Matadors familiar with the competition agree that the Mustang’s badminton team is not on par their own. With a history of CCS success in the last decade, MVHS stands tall on the court, but not excessively proud.

On an individual match basis, the scores were more contested than they were as a school. The Mustangs came close to winning a few individual games, while losing by more than 14 points in other matches. When players weren’t competing, they were watching the rotation of 30 games, chatting at the water fountain or cheering from the sidelines.

Within the boundaries of the court there was a sense of competition. A smile or a nod could be accompanied by the return of the birdie. A high five between opponents at the end of the game does not mean that both teams have won. Each team was respectful and played well, but a 30-0 victory does not happen by accident.

Wu Will Win?

MVHS sophomore George Wu didn’t just play against HHS player Wesley Wu. He went to war. As closely matched in skill as they were by last name, the match was one of the most intense in the Boys’ Singles. George was behind four points by the seven minute mark with a score of 12-8, but after a series of returns, aimed towards Wesley’s offhand side, the disparity in scores somehow turned even worse.

On March 19, sophomore George Wu rallied against HHS player, Wesley Wu. George Wu won this match with one of the closest scores of the game with 21-17. Photo by Brandon Chin.
On March 19, sophomore George Wu rallied against HHS player, Wesley Wu. George Wu won this match with one of the closest scores of the game with 21-17. Photo by Brandon Chin.

The game had stretched to 13 minutes and George was losing 17-10. At the threat of disturbing the Matador’s perfect score and with the constant cheering from George’s teammates, the comeback began. With a series of smashes towards Wesley’s far right, George managed to turn around the score without dropping the beat once. As the score turned in George’s favor at 20-17, the six MVHS onlookers were cheering as HHS watched onward. The last minute of the game sailed by and George won his match, earning his 21st point and keeping up the perfect score that MVHS had established that day.

George was relieved.

“I was never sure I was going to win but I was happy when I did.”

Coming Together

Junior Darren Mock and sophomore David Chen played in one of the longer doubles game with a total length of 14 minutes. The pair did well and ended with an impressive score of 21-12 though this victory was nearly imbalanced by their lack of coordination as both players tried to do the work of the pair.

Junior Darren Mock prepares to serve as his doubles partner, sophomore David Chen, watches from the rear of the court. Matadors cheered from the sidelines as one of the longer doubles game continued. Photo by Brandon Chin.
Junior Darren Mock prepares to serve as his doubles partner, sophomore David Chen, watches from the rear of the court. Matadors cheered from the sidelines as one of the longer doubles game continued. Photo by Brandon Chin.

This was evident early in the game when the score was relatively close at 12-8, when they dove for the same shot and the one occasions when they nearly collided head on. Towards the last half of the game they managed to refocus and played admirably. Giving no more advances to their opponent they won by a notable nine point lead.

“It went fine,” Darren Mock said. “I just let my partner do all the work.”

MVHS will face off against Gunn High School in their next home game — one that they anticipate will be another victory. With a perfect score to start the season, the Matadors are eager to drive into the next game.

The next home game will be on March 26th at 3:30 p.m against Gunn High School.