50° Larkspur, CA
The Student News Site of Redwood High School

Redwood Bark

Redwood Bark

Redwood Bark

What it means to be a Giant
What it means to be a Giant
Gil LadetzkyJune 22, 2024

In fifth grade, I attended my first-ever Redwood basketball game. It was a rainy Thursday night in a gym packed with energetic students. As I...

A high school student ridden with acne scrolls through social media posts of influencers with seemingly flawless skin from filters.
The bulging red bumps of your teen years shouldnt be normalized: Acne vulgaris, a detrimentally neglected disease
Emily HitchcockJune 20, 2024

Acne vulgaris is a chronic inflammatory disease —those red, white or scarred marks, the ones that stand out or grow beneath the skin as a painful...

Seniors launch their caps in their air as Dr. Barnaby Payne announces they have officially graduated.
Redwood class of 2024 graduates amid tears, cheers and airhorns: A celebration to remember
Cora ChampommierJune 15, 2024

  On Thursday, June 13, the Redwood class 2024 solidified their impact on the school over the past four years and became a step closer...

Congressman Jared Huffman visits boys’ varsity tennis practice after MCAL championship

The boys’ varsity tennis team has enjoyed an eventful past two weeks. On Wednesday, April 17, they beat the Archie Williams Falcons 7-0 in the Marin County Athletic League (MCAL) team semifinals to advance to the team championships. In the championship, on Friday, April 19, the Giants were just as dominant, winning 6-1 and securing the MCAL team title. Then, on Wednesday, April 24, senior Jackson Sichel secured second place in the boy’s singles tournament, while senior Chris Lee and freshman Cal Fazal beat their teammates, senior Julian Montalik and freshman Will Greenwald, to finish third and fourth, respectively, in the MCAL doubles tournament. Later in the week, freshman Julian Zhang was named MCAL player of the year. To cap it all off, Congressman Jared Huffman, a long-time friend of coach Craig Flax, stopped by practice on Friday to play with the team.

“I like hanging out with young people and trying to be a positive influence. I just wanted to come and support Coach Flax and give these young athletes some positive energy as they head further into the playoffs,” Huffman said.

I just wanted to come and support Coach Flax and give these young athletes some positive energy as they head further into the playoffs.

— Congressman Jared Huffman

The North Coast Section (NCS) singles and doubles tournament will take place on May 3 and 4, and the team playoffs will start about a week later. The competition is a step up from local play, but the Giants still maintain high expectations.

“There are some very strong teams in the NCS. Making it to the semifinals is kind of my expectation, and if we make it to the finals, I would be very happy. We can compete with all of the best teams for sure. I don’t know if we’re far better than any of them, but I think we’re right with them,” Flax said.

Coach Craig Flax introduces longtime friend Jared Huffman to the boys’ varsity tennis team.

Zhang continued his spectacular season into the playoffs, taking down Branson’s top player, 6-4, 6-1, in the MCAL championship. However, due to a conflict with another tournament, he could not attend the MCAL singles playoffs. Looking ahead to the NCS, Zhang has one goal in mind. 

“[NCS] is definitely very competitive, but we played some great teams in MCAL too so I think we’re ready. We’re hoping to win the whole thing,” Zhang said. 

The boys’ varsity team has had large success despite an inexperienced, largely underclassmen roster. The young freshmen class makes Flax very excited for the future of the team.

“With this group of freshmen, if they all stay playing high school tennis, we will be very good. We won NCS in 2018, and these guys, maybe even by next year, will be better than that team. They just need some time to develop,” Flax said.

After leading the Giants to an MCAL championship as the highest-ranked player on the team, freshman Julian Zhang teams up with Congressman Huffman.

Congressman Huffman’s appearance at practice provided a nice change of pace for the team. On a sunny but very windy Friday afternoon, Huffman teamed up with Zhang and took on some of the best the Giants had to offer. In his first match, they faced captains Lee and Sichel, easily defeating them 6-0 in a lighthearted, friendly match. The duo took on junior Liam Martinez and Greenwald in the second match. Once again, the Congressman won handily, 6-1 this time. They finished the day playing matches of just one or two games, allowing the rest of the team to face off against Huffman. The Congressman played well, partly due to help from the MCAL player of the year, and also because of the Giants’ timidness to hit balls too hard at him. Nonetheless, his athleticism and serves were impressive, and the Giants enjoyed his presence in the midst of their postseason run. 

More to Discover
About the Contributor
Matthew Knauer
Matthew Knauer, Sports Editor
Matthew Knauer is a junior at Redwood High School and is a sports editor for the bark. He enjoys playing baseball, surfing, and hanging out with friends.