July 15th, 2013

LCSN Year in Review: Girls' tennis

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Conor Revell

Managing Editor


LCSN Year in Review: Girls' tennis
Sacred Heart won the 2013 team state title / file photo by Conor Revell

Assumption, Presentation and Sacred Heart sent several tennis players to the state tournament. Sacred Heart won the team state championship and the doubles state championship. Assumption had a player in the singles Sweet 16 and a team in the doubles Sweet 16. Presentation’s Kelsey O’Bryan played in the state tourney as well.

Assumption

Carolyn Morris and Hallie Pennington advanced to the round of 16 in the doubles state tournament before bowing out. Abbie Mather advanced to the Sweet 16, where she retired against Ryle’s Carey Lucas.

Presentation

O’Bryan advanced to the state tournament but fell to Montgomery County’s Caitlyn Conyers 6-0; 6-1 in the first round.

Sacred Heart

The Valkyries won their eighth team state tennis championship by defeating Lone Oak 3-1 at the University of Kentucky’s Boone/ Downey Tennis Complex. It was the Valkyries’ first state title since 2008.

 “First of all, give a lot of credit to Lone Oak ­­— they pushed us,” Sacred Heart co-head coach Jason McGill said. “They pushed us as far as we could’ve been pushed. I’m kind of speechless right now.”

With the Valkyries leading 2-1 in the team state title matchup, Sacred Heart’s Abbey MacMillan and Lone Oak’s McKenna Garneau went into a third and deciding set after MacMillan won the first set 6-0 and Garneau took the second 6-1.

“Coach (Kristen English) told me that I needed to start playing my game and relax,” MacMillan said. “I knew that I could do it, I just needed to believe in myself and do what I needed to do.”

MacMillan went up 3-0 in the third set before Garneau rallied to tie it. But MacMillan never trailed again and was mobbed by her teammates after she won.

“There wasn’t a girl on our team that wanted to win state more than Abbey,” Sacred Heart co-head coach Kristen English said. “McKenna changed things up on her, but she was able to persevere and got the job done.”

MacMillan’s victory meant Sacred Heart’s Ashley Hammons and Lone Oak’s Madeline Kaufman didn’t have to play a third set. Hammons took the first 7-5 set, and Kaufman won the second 6-1.

Not only did Sacred Heart take the team state title, Katherine English and Sydney Thomson won the doubles state title. It was English’s third straight state title, her first with Thomson, though.

English and Thomson defeated Notre Dame’s Laura Irons and Catriona Shaughnessy 6-0, 7-6, making English the first three-peat doubles champion since Candy Jackson of Murray did it from 1978-80.

“It feels so good to win,” Katherine English beamed. “I’m especially happy to do it with a senior. We’re both seniors and it’s great to go out with a bang.”

While it was English’s third straight title, it was Thompson’s first. Caitlin Hanley won state titles with English the previous two years.

“Yes, I was playing singles. I mainly had to keep practicing, practicing and practicing,” Thompson said. “Practices really helped us. It helped us bond as a team and we learned how to work together.”

 

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