Southwest Guilford High School
Womens Varsity Tennis
Game Summaries & Headlines.
- Game Date
- Sep 20, 2023
- COWBOYS: 3.00
NORTHERN GUILFORD HIGH SCHOOL: 6.00
September 20, 2023
Yes, it is late. No, we didn’t win. Yes, the ladies improved their play from last meeting with the Nighthawks.
The skinny (just like Coach’s new nickname):
Anna faced off against a UTR 5.0. Audrey was a 6+ at the end of last season. Anna is a near 3. 5 > 3. Anna fought and was able to hang nicely with Reese throughout the first set…eventually capturing 3 games, two from her serve and valiant play. The second set, Reese dialed it in, lengthening her shots and angling her crosscourts even more while still punishing anything short that came across the net. Points were still tight, but clearly, Reese held all the cards. Anna goes down swinging 3 and 0.
Evelyn was disappointed in her play tonight. The freshy is still learning the difference between playing well and winning. One can play well and lose…play poorly and win. Yes, there is still a disconnect. Going down 1 and 0 last match up, Evelyn, with her newfound consistent topspin from both sides, aimed to play. Catching her stride by the end of the first set, Evelyn held tight through the first 8 games of the second set challenging the LY’s conf tourney winner point for point. Then the Nighthawk broke….and then held. Though going down 2 and 4 tonight, Evelyn showed a vast improvement in her hitting maturity and ability to play and deliver deeper shots.
Playing the mid line up courts, both Rachael and Church fought well tonight. Rachael was hitting the hardest and most consistent topspin (both sides) she has hit to date. Coupled with an impressive array of slices to bring her opponent into the net, Rachael stayed tight throughout the entire match. Due to her opponents shots, Rachael was hitting these shots from two steps back of the baseline. Tonight was about extending her shots and making the opponent work for every point…and she did just that! This was true as well for Church on court 4. Shot for shot, Church was in every point. The rallies and corner shots from both courts were very impressive. The depth these two Nighthawks had and their angles allowed them to pull away from the Cowgirl play tonight.
Bella and Christman swapped spots based on a Tuesday challenge match.
Bella came into five with a new racket and a moxie! Not sure if the word “Moxie” worked here or not (put your comments below), but Coach hasn’t used moxie in a while…thought this was the match to try it out on.
Bella’s play is as much left to right as it is back to front. This made all the difference tonight. After playing her opponent 7-5, 6-4 at #6 last meeting between the teams, tonight she was facing off against a better playing on court 5. Bella began strong…quickly breaking her opponent with the back and forth, to and fro style play she has adopted as her own. One break, hold, hold, two breaks, and the first set was in the books 6-3. ‘Bout this time the Nighthawk had begun getting into her rhythm. Bigger shots, pushing deeper, better angles…we talk about the second set bump. Tonight was no different.
The nighthawk came out swinging. Easy hold for Northern. Bella struggles but holds nonetheless. Another easy hold for Northern…and then a break. Bella is down 1-3. Coach chats briefly, all things shall pass, not in the biblical sense…well, sure, in the biblical sense, but tonight, on the court, this brief jump in ability should be nearing its end. Though the Nighthawk will continue to hit out, the consistency will fade. And it did just that. No, Coach isn’t a prophet. Coach has simply been round a season or 15. The Nighthawk still tried to hit out…Bella pushed her shots a wee but higher and thus deeper or simply sliced it closer to the net. This was all but too much for the NightHawk. She was tired. Bella still had her stamina. Shots faded, shots pushed, Bella remained constant.
Break back by the Cowgirl. 5-4.
The Nighthawk isn’t moving and is overhitting. Bella takes the last game in 4 straight points.
6-3, 6-4. Coach smiled.
As mentioned before, Bella and Christman swapped spots tonight due to the challenge yesterday.
It took Christman the first set to gain her footing against a different Nighthawk. Shots were deeper. And the crosscourt approach on the forehand by the Nighthawk was really good. But the set showed promise. Down 1-4, Caroline was able to settle in , hold serve, and break the Nighthawk. Serves were traded to 4-5 before the Nighthawk was able to put it away. A quality match that showed Caroline’s ability to lift her game and play a deeper ball.
So….Cowgirls lose the match in singles…but as mentioned before, played a much better game across the board than the first time out against the Nighthawks.
Northern played up to allow for others to play. The Cowgirls didn’t mind…still trying to find pairing magic, Anna and Church on court 1, Rachael and Bella on court 2, Evelyn and Christman on court 3.
The real issue wasn’t the shifting of the seeds for dubs. The issue was that the Cowgirls talent drops at a regular interval throughout our top six and beyond. The Nighthawks on the other hand simply plateau. In short, most of the Nighthawks #’s 4/5/6/7/8/9/10 all have game with subtle differences in their ability to beat each other. They all play a deep, strong ball.
Anna and Church took on Northern’s 5/6. A tight match but in the end a pulling away due to the talent of the return shots and net play from the Cowgirls.
Rachel and Bella played dubs court 2. Though playing shot for shot and game for game through the first 8 games of the match, the Nighthawks began to unleash from the backcourt. With both Nighthawks playing back, they negated the Cowgirls cross courts shots and amped up the speed and angle of shot proving too much for the Cowgirls. Good net and movement, but not enough to stop the Nighthawks.
Evelyn and Christman on Court 3. Were they up, were they down. Coach had a lot of conflicting data coming from this match. Coach won’t say freshy tendencies since one of the Cowgirls is a jr, I think you get the picture. Net play was spirited to flat. Returns were on and off. Overhitting was rampant on both sides of the net. This was as much opportunity as it was an issue for the Cowgirls. Tonight, for court 3, it was as much inexperience as it was exuberance. The Nighthawks played a good ball. Down a break, the Cowgirls recovered going up at 8-7. The Nighthawks, through some wild play and rallies, came back to tie forcing a tiebreak. Luckily the clouds were not in abundance because as Coach looked up, the stars were aligning and the Cowgirls, through a mix of good shots in, a missed call and a few errors from the Nighthawks, and the sliver of a moon smiling down from heaven, the Cowgirls edged the Nighthawks 7-2 in the tiebreak. It truly could have gone either way tonight.
The Cowgirls close out another tough match and will travel to Southeast Guilford on Monday to face off against their new freshy line up.
Wish us luck before the weekend and Monday workday.
Reese Terrell (NG) over Anna McGinnis (SW) 3-6, 0-6
Lyndsay Lambis (NG) over Evelyn McKnight (SW) 2-6, 4-6
Gracen Wise (NG) over Rachael Dee (SW) 0-6, 0-6
Cate Wise (NG) over Caroline Church (SW) 0-6, 0-6
Bella Johnson (SW) over Kieran Smith (NG) 6-3, 6-4
Maddie Pollina (NG) over Caroline Christman (SW) 1-6, 4-6
McGinnis/Church (SW) over Smith/Pollina (NG) 8-4
Isabella Rodriguez/Audrey Wrinkle (NG) over Dee/Johnson (SW) 4-8
McKnight/Christman (SW) over May Westbrook/Baity Barksdale (NG) 9-8 (7-2)
Cowgirls moved to 8-9 on the season 3-7 in conference play
The Cowgirls will travel to Southeast Guilford on Monday