Lady Squires win 4th straight tennis sectional championship

The Manchester girls tennis team won its fourth consecutive sectional championship Saturday, May 18 with a 5-0 win over Maconaquah. Pictured are, from left, Morgan Stroud, Anna Osborne, Kelsey Eichenauer, Eva Bazzoni, Halle Briner, Halie Wampler, Rebekah Pyle. Photo provided. 

By Eric Christiansen

PERU -- Manchester continued its dominance in area girls tennis with its fourth straight sectional championship Saturday, May 18 at Peru's Thrush Courts.

The Squires matched up with Maconaquah after the Squires edged Peru, and the Braves fought to get past Northfield in the semifinals the evening before.

The championship match was more anti-climatic with Manchester clinching a 5-0 win in just over an hour.

“This was an outstanding achievement for not only our eight seniors who have worked hard to achieve this success, but also the entire team and program,” Manchester coach Joel Eichenauer said.

First off the court was Eva Bazzoni with a 6-1, 6-1 win at 3-singles.

The 2-doubles team of Rebekah Pyle and Alyssa Marvel made it a 2-0 team score with a 6-0, 6-2 win.

The clinching points came from the 1-doubles team of Anna Osborne and Rebekah Pyle who won 6-3, 6-0 to send the Squires to regional.

While the score was decisive at 2-singles, Halle Briner won a long 6-1, 6-1 match to put the Squires up 4-0,
Meanwhile, 1-singles player Kelsey Eichenauer was in a battle for two sets, dropping the first set 6-4, then battling back with a 6-4 win in the second set to send the match to a decisive third set.

In the final set, it was all Eichenauer cruising to a 6-0 shut-out.

“We had excellent depth this season as 12 girls saw varsity match play,” Coach Eichenauer said. “Seniors Morgan Stroud and Briley Spann really gave our team leadership and a lift when we needed it the most.”

Manchester improved to 13-4 on the year with the win.

They take their record, along with their fourth straight conference and sectional titles to the Culver Academies Regional where they will face Plymouth Tuesday, May 21 at 5 p.m.

Manchester 3, Peru 2
The Squires went the distance to get to the championship match with a 3-2 win over host Peru Friday, May 17.

Peru won the first set in three matches, but could only hold on for two of them.

At 3-singles, Bazzoni was the first off the court for Manchester with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Celia Vallez.

Peru tied it up at 1-1 when Madisyn Carrico and Molly Gray won two tight sets over Osborne and Halie Wampler 7-5, 6-4.

The Squires took a 2-1 lead when the 2-doubles team of Pyle and Marvel won 6-4, 6-3 over Casidy Bartel and Libby Rogers.

The Tigers knotted things up at 2-2 when Claire Boyer beat Manchester's Eichenauer 6-4, 6-3 at  1-singles.

Meanwhile at 2-singles, the Squires' Briner was struggling against Cate Wolfe with a 6-1 loss in the first set.

But the sophomore rebounded, fighting cramps, to run away with 6-1, 6-1 wins in the final two sets.

Maconaquah 3, Northfield 2
Northfield fell short of the championship match with a 3-2 loss to Maconaquah in the other semifinal.

Chloe Miller fought back from an early deficit in the first set to win 6-4, 6-2 at 1-singles, and will advance to the individual sectional later this week at Culver Academy.

At 2-singles, Kelcie Thomson won Northfield's other point 6-2, 6-3.

Ashley Lyons lost a tough 3-set match at 3-singles 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, while the 1-doubles team of Erin Whetstone and Lyndsey Carter battled in a 7-6, 6-4  loss.

The 2-doubles team of Tori Bogert and Allysa Haupert fell short 6-2, 6-3.

“It was a tough loss between two pretty equally matched teams,” Northfield coach Marianne Milam said. “It was a great season for the much improved girls.

“Thank you to the three seniors (Thomson, Whetstone and Macie Sears) for their leadership and great attitudes that have really changed the way we play Lady Norse tennis.”

Northfield ends the season with an 8-5 overall record and a third place finish in the TRC at 6-2.

Maconaquah 4, Peru 1
Wabash's girls tennis team lost to Peru, 4-1, in opening round action of the Peru sectional on Wednesday.

Annie Cole and Evelynn Gray were the Lady Apaches lone victors at No.2 Doubles.

Maconaquah 5, Southwood 0
Southwood's tennis team fell to Maconaquah, 5-0.

Posted on 2019 May 21