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The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

Best finish ever for tennis at state

Best+finish+ever+for+tennis+at+state

In a season plagued with rainouts and delays, the state tournament was no different, as the Leopard tennis team weathered the rain and cold one more time to bring home silver medals.

Due to the weather, the tournament was played in Abilene at three different sites with indoor courts and a shortened format.

“The shortened format meant that someone would play either singles or doubles, but not both,” freshman Anne Reyna said. “We had to find a line-up that gave us the best overall chance, but it was hard because we didn’t know whether the other schools would put their best players in singles or doubles.”

Instead of having to win ten of 19 matches to advance to the next round, only five matches out of nine were needed due to the shortened format.

“I tried to put out the strongest nine matches that we could possibly do,” head coach Adam Cherry said. “If you make it a guessing game and load up in one thing, and guess wrong, then there’s no way you’ll win. I tried to create a line-up that gave us the most possibilities to win all around.”

Beating La Feria, Vernon, and Lampasas easily, the tennis team advanced to the state finals to face an Abilene Wylie team that had won the title nine times in the previous 11 years.

“We come from a winning tradition, as well,” Cherry said. “We went 65-1 since the regional tournament and both teams were going into the state championship undefeated [at the state tournament].”

Expectations were high for the Leopards, as the rain format gave them a legitimate chance at winning the title.

“I thought that the rain line-up was pretty much a set-up for us to win,” Cherry said. “Those first four matches that we put out there, at worst, I thought we would be tied at two all.”

Girls B doubles, guys A and B singles, and mixed doubles were the first names drawn out of the hat to play. But as play ensued, Abilene Wylie’s experience better equipped them to deal with the pressure.

“In three of those matches there was a point where it was tied at 6 all,” Cherry said. “Playing at the stage, where they had been so many times before, gave them the edge.”

Another advantage Abilene Wylie received was having the tournament moved onto their home courts.

“They got so many people there, because most of them probably just lived across the street,” Reyna said. “The crowd really helped push the momentum their way, and it really hurt us in the finals.”

While the final score ended with Abilene Wylie winning the championship 5-1, the match was a lot closer than the score showed. Three of the five matches were won by Abilene 8-6, and some of the later matches that were not able to go on favored the Leopards.

“I didn’t like how not everyone could play in each match,” Cherry said. “Especially in the state championships with not everyone getting to play. When you’re playing for the state championship everyone should get to play.”

The boys’ doubles team comprised of senior Logan Stevens and freshman Jacob Hagedorn only played in one of the four matches at state. And the girls’ doubles team of Reyna and freshman Anna Dickens was one of the teams unable to play in the finals.

“I felt helpless because I wasn’t even able to play in the finals,” Reyna said.

The doubles team of senior Kenny Sweeney and junior Oliver Brewer was one of the only teams able to net a win against the Abilene Wylie line-up, which has gone unchallenged in the last four state finals matches.

“It felt like revenge,” Sweeney said. “Alex Brown and I got beat by Abilene Wylie in the state finals [of individual’s last year], and I just wanted to get back at them.”

Unfortunately, their win did not have the desired effect.

“I thought that winning that match would trigger our comeback, but in the back of my mind I also knew [that we were going to lose],” Sweeney said.

Although the team came up short in the finals, the silver medals are the best in school history.

“First we got 5th [at state], and then 3rd, and this year we were supposed to get first,” Sweeney said. “Well, we got second which is pretty close and Abilene Wylie is a pretty good team so we should be really proud of that.”

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About the Contributor
Samantha Wendt, Managing Editor
Initially, the legendary snack cabinet and promise of courtside Mavericks tickets lured Senior Samantha Wendt to the newspaper class. Wendt enjoys experimenting with dessert recipes, and sometimes spends upwards of 6 hours making a decadent dessert. Even more than food, Wendt worships the Dallas Mavericks. She idolizes NBA Finals MVP Dirk Nowitzki, and knows every single statistic and happening within the Mavericks organization. In the 1st grade Wendt alternated between studying the biographies of the first 42 US Presidents and learning Russian. In 4th grade, she progressed to mapping out the rest of her life; she decided to travel to every single country in the world for a year after college, become a spy for the President, take a bullet in the leg for the President which would led to her subsequent two-term election, and become a college professor until she dies. Now, Wendt has made her life plan more achievable, and aspires to join the FBI.

Comments (4)

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  • AnonymousDec 10, 2012 at 4:53 pm

    GO TENNIS

    Reply
  • L

    Leopard NationApr 24, 2012 at 12:24 pm

    No one asked you!

    Reply
    • A

      AnonymousDec 10, 2012 at 4:54 pm

      I LOVE TENNIS

      Reply
  • A

    AnonymousApr 13, 2012 at 11:10 am

    You were not supposed to get 1st Abilene Wylie was a better team all around plain and simple

    Reply