July 19th, 2016

Year in review: Girls' tennis

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Conor Revell

Staff Writer

Year in review: Girls' tennis
The Valkyries lost in the state finals / file photo by Conor Revell

The Louisville Catholic Sports Network chronicles the 2015-16 sports year in review. We will bring you every sport, every season, and every team’s season ending results in a capsule until we're finished.

Assumption: Sarah Cook and Abby Harlan made it to the state doubles tournament but lost to Russell’s Maci Ferguson and Kierstin Hensley 6-1, 6-2 in the opening round.

Sarah Fitzgerald and Kendel Hieatt also made it to the doubles state tournament but lost a 4-6, 6-4, 0-1 heartbreaker to North Hardin’s Hannah Lowman and Allie Sutton.

No other Rockets made it to the state tourney.

Mercy: No Jaguars made it to the state tournament.

Presentation: Not Toppers made it to the state tournament.

Sacred Heart: The state tournament was heartbreak city for the Valkyries as graduation and IB testing affecting their team more than once.

Natalie Dahlem, Isabelle Kuo, Madeline Wagner and Lucy Herrington had to choose whether or not to attend graduation or play in their state title match against McCracken County.

Ultimately the seniors chose to skip the state title match and attend graduation.

“The four seniors that are at their graduation right now have worked hard for us the last four years,” McGill said after the state title match. “We’ve won two state titles with those girls and they have competed day in and day out. It is what it is. I’m happy for what they have accomplished on the court and in the classroom. I’m happy that they are at their graduation.”

The Valkyries ended up losing 3-0 to McCracken County and faced a 1-0 deficit entering the match.

McCracken County junior Michelle McKamey defeated Sacred Heart freshman Ella Rueff 6-0, 6-1 in the No. 1 singles match. Taylor Sprouse defeated junior Kailey King 6-0, 6-1 in the No. 2 singles match to secure the championship.

Madelyn Kauffman and Sophia Shiber were leading SHA sophomores Abby Birk and Samantha Higgins 6-3, 1-2 when their doubles match was abandoned.

“The seniors gave us a little bit of a pep talk last night in the hotel,” Birk said. “They were really apologetic that they weren’t going to be there because they wanted to be here so bad and win a state championship. But they told us to go out there give them our very best even though it would be difficult.”

Sacred Heart freshman Natalie Chou and sophomore Kennedy Martin were trailing Danni Poat and Shelby Puryear 6-3, 3-0 when their match was halted.

“With the circumstances being what they are and the way the girls competed against a very good team, I think they have to be proud of themselves,” McGill said after the match. “I think playing in this type of situation gives them something to look forward to next year. I hope that what they take away from the situation is motivation to work hard to get better and make sure the result is different next year.”

The Valkyries defeated Elizabethtown 3-0 in the first round, Notre Dame 3-0 in the quarterfinals and Highlands 3-0 in the semifinals to secure a spot in the championship match. 

Wagner made it to the singles state tournament but lost to Casey County’s Amber Pierce in the first round because she had IB testing the day of the match.

Rueff also made it to the state tournament and lost 6-1, 6-3 to Oldham County’s Jarrett Aspen in the first round.

Dahlem and Kuo were heavy favorites to make a run in the doubles state tournament but was eliminated in the Sweet 16 because they were ruled as no shows due to IB testing allowing North Oldham twins Emma and Katie Beavins to move on. 


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