Reb netters roll to sectional finals with 20th victory
Friday, May 17, 2013 11:00 AM
Southwestern's tennis team rolled into the sectional championship match with a 4-1 win over cross-county rival Shawe Memorial 4-1 in the semifinals Thursday in Greensburg.
The Lady Rebels, who are now 20-2 on the season, suffered only a loss at No. 1 singles en route to the title match. The No. 2 singles match also went down to the wire but Southwestern wasn't touched in the other three pairings.
"It was a good match just like I thought it would be," Southwestern coach Kenny Garrett said. "Shawe is always ready to play against us and a couple of the matches could have gone either way."
"Congrats to Kenny and his girls. They are a classy group and there is always nothing but good sportsmanship when we play each other," Shawe coach Steve Sims said. "I hope they pull out the title on Saturday."
Shawe's Liz Grote spoiled the Southwestern sweep when she took out the Rebels' Abbey Garrett in three sets at No. 1 singles. Garrett won the opener 7-6 but Grote rebounded with 6-3 wins in both the second and third sets.
No. 2 singles also went the distance before Southwestern's Sarah Anderson beat the Hilltoppers' Taylor Grote 4-6, 6-3, 6-3. Cheyenne McKinley scored a 6-0, 6-1 win over Bailey Davis at No. 3 singles.
Jordan Worcester and Kearstin Bruther teamed up to beat Kalyn Robison and Brittany Snodgrass 7-6, 6-2 at No. 1 doubles. The No. 2 doubles team of Sydnie McKinley and Alex Drossart knocked off Hannah Storm and McKay Burdette 6-2, 6-0.
With her victory, Grote advances to the individual sectional that will be held starting next week in Seymour. Southwestern's Worcester and Bruther can also advance to the individual sectional with a win on Saturday.
"I am very sad that the season ends for us as a team, but very excited for Liz," said Sims, whose team ends the season with a 7-12 record. "These senior girls were freshmen when I took over this team and it has been so much fun coaching them for the last four years. I am glad that I get at least one more match with Liz to keep Shawe tennis alive. I feel like as long as Liz is still alive, our season isn't over yet."
The Lady Rebels can move onto the next round as a team with a victory over Greensburg in the sectional championship on Saturday. The Pirates beat Jennings County 5-0 in Thursday's other semifinal. Southwestern has never won a sectional title in either boys or girls tennis.
"If we have any chances of winning the sectional on Saturday we will have to play better than we did tonight as a team," Kenny Garrett said. "No matter what happens on Saturday this team has exceeded my expectations for this season and I am very proud of them. But that trophy would be nice."
Southwestern and Greensburg meet at 10 a.m. in Greensburg.