Womens Varsity Tennis
|Southwest Guilford High School||9|
|Cornerstone Charter Academy||0|
Sept 28 2021
Cowgirls hosted Cornerstone Academy in non-conference tennis action.
Cornerstone is a 1A, but close. Coach had originally secured their spot on the schedule pre-Covid to allow a restful varsity match and allow some of the lower seeded Cowgirls the opportunity to play against someone their own speed. Fast forward to this year, playing deep in the season and sandwiched between two Conference matches for both teams, the two coaches opted for a mix of top 6 and lower seed play for all the marbles. Knowing the depth of the Cowgirls, Coach had little concern, but we had to play our games.
Audrey and Tran both played singles. Grace, Lauren, Anna, and Kate played Doubles.
New to the Singles line-up:
Rachael Dee (normally dubs)
New to the Dubs:
Audrey walked her player through in 35 minutes. Cornerstone #1 had pace and depth, but was ill prepared for a tournament hardened player of Audrey’s caliber. 6-0, 6-0
Tran hiccupped out of the gate. Tran played Tran but pushed long on almost every approach shot/short shot #2 gave her. Coupled with good serving from both…neither player could break free of one another and lay claim to a service break. 5-5, Tran held. 6-5, Tran broke. 7-5 the first set.
With her opponent a bit exhausted after such a trying first set, Tran settled back into playing Tran, hitting her shots and winning points without interruption. 6-1 in the second. A solid win for Tran.
Betsy Chen, just outside of the top six all season, now getting to play a varsity singles match. Short of the opponent’s looks, height, hair and eye color, and Coach imagines preference in lip gloss, they were twins…..oh! Coach means playing twins. Yes, they had the same game! What a joy having a great match on court 2 and now, court 3 as well.
Though I cannot say intense from observing, the play was on par with their respective skill level, but it was so enjoyable for both Coaches to witness. Shots were adjusted, learned, and adjusted again. Serves were fair to good. Returns pushing towards the outside edges of the singles court, but by and large, centered around the middle of the court. On serve…a broken serve, Betsy down a break, battling back, drawing even, now 5-5. Unable to convert the last game, Betsy’s opponent draws it even once more at 6-6 (6 all) and forces a tiebreaker. Of course! Because that is what playing twins do!
Picking up the action at changeover with Betsy just ahead, Betsy simply kept the ball in play longer and did a marvelous job at keeping her ball deep to push ahead further, winning the first set 7-6 ( 7-3).
The real question was: Will the opponent fold in the second being too exhausted to carry out their playing strategy or will they hang tight????
Of Course they held tight! They are playing twins!
On serve through most of the second set, Betsy getting into a rhythm of serve, baseline return, stepping in slightly to address the ball, hitting deep and working the corners better and better as the match progressed, her opponent too began moving quite well, getting to the balls and making a real go out of the longer rallies. Again, action wise, not much, but a beautiful game of play from both ladies.
Betsy simply wanted it more. 5-5 once more, 6-5 Betsy…and breaking the serve of Ms Keeny for the final time, Betsy walks off with a 7-6(7-3),7-5 victory. It was a great match for both, but lucky for the Cowgirls, it was a win for the archives.
Though not as long or epic as Betsy’s match, 4/5/6 played well.
Rachael Dee, in her second Varsity singles outing was able to hit comfortable, without rushing, and finding the deeper parts of the court, threw her opponent into a bit of a bind and won out 6-0, 6-0. Though not as fast as Audrey’s match, Rachael’s came in at good time.
Caroline found her sweet spot of her shots and pushed her opponent too far back to be effective. Though her opponent earned two games from the Cowgirl, Caroline finished her match 6-1, 6-1.
Tamara Davis, though winning the match by a good amount score wise, had to do battle a bit more than the last two Cowgirls. Longer than anyone by Betsy in her game time, Tamara’s rallies were 5-7 shots a piece, deep, and bounced quite high. In layman’s speak, the points went long…every time. But they were evenly matched with a slight advantage to Tamara. And that was all it took. 6-2, 6-1 in a great match from these two players as well.
Into Doubles and the return of the top six…well, 3-7???, Hey Look! I recognize those faces!
Grace and Anna joined forces at #1. Lauren and Kate on Court 2. Newbies Evie Wesney and Bella Johnson on court 3. If the reader is asking what about Rachael with Laruen, remember, she played singles. Everyone plays. Be it varsity or exhibition, everyone plays.
Grace and Anna worked out some kinks in their joint venture. Serves were good. Net play solid. The Unicorn gift with sprinkles was the down the (dubs) alley shot that this court did so well. To the tennis neophyte, most dubs is played cross court and as such, systematically luring both sides and players towards the middle. Focus is on the middle. Shots are cross court or down the middle. It is just so inviting! But the alleys aren’t shown the love they should. The trend shifted tonight. Both Anna and Grace found and began regularly execute shots down the alley….and better yet, they were good shots. Spreading their opponents from the middle and closer to the net posts, the Cowgirls now had a middle to play with. That’s right, shots down the middle. Confused and dazed with the shot selection of the Cowgirls, this court earns another win for the Cowgirls.
Lauren and Kate court 2. First time together as a dubs team, these Cowgirls did not disappoint. With most of their opponent’s shots short and to the middle, Kate and Lauren both returned the favor and hit the ball back down the middle…point Cowgirls. The alleys became fair game as well on court 2. When pushed wide, Cornerstone would cover the middle expecting a cross court, but no! Alley’s became a fertile ground of points to reap. Brimming with confidence and knowing their advantage, the Cowgirls take Court 2 8-2.
Newbies Evie Wesney and Bella Johnson, and in retrospect, both TK’s (teacher kids), played great. Yes, there were some wild shots. But also yes there were some great points, tight net play, solid baselines from both sides…everything you would expect to from developing players. But all in all, not only a win, but good tennis from the Cowgirls. They anticipated well. They communicated well. Their shots were not too rushed. 8-3. First varsity wins for these two Cowgirls.
Cowgirls win 9-0, but more importantly, all but one Cowgirl earned a(another) varsity win tonight and the one in question, was able to play exhibition and played well.
The Cowgirls raise to even on the season in overall (7-7) and remain 5-5 in conference play.
Cowgirls travel to Grimsley tomorrow to take on the Whirlies in conference play. After losing to them 4-5 the first round, hopes are to turn that to the Cowgirls favor this time.
Audrey Serb (SW) over Molly Cooper (CC) 6-0,6-0
Tran nguyen(SW) over Sydney Clark(CC) 7-5,6-1
Betsy Chen(SW) over Emily Keeney(CC) 7-6(7-3),7-5
Rachael Dee (SW) over Abuja Koirala(CC) 6-0,6-0
Caroline Church (SW) over Tara Kenney (CC) 6-1,6-1
Tamara Davis(SW) over Ilana Brooks(CC) 6-2,6-1
Grace Parsons/Anna McGinnis(SW) over Katlyn Poole/Katie Wright(CC) 8-2
Lauren Harris/Kate Cherry(SW) over Maddie Rudd/Ave Cooper(CC) 8-2
Evie Wesney/Bella Johnson(SW) over Tatum McGuire/Emilie Choiniese(CC) 8-3
Cowgirls win 9-0 drawing even (7-7) in over play and remain 5-5 in conference.
They travel to Grimsley for another conf match.