If it was baseball, it would be like getting 10 more hits than your opponent and still losing. If it was football, it would be like getting 10 more 1st downs than your opponent and still losing. At Saturdays Lapel Invitational tennis tournament, Blackford won 51 games in the five matches that were contested and New Castle won 41 games. However, the final score was New Castle 3 and Blackford 2.
The doubles teams started off the day with the 2D team of Nancy Cole and Brianna Phillips picking up an easy win. The 1D team of Shelby Sullivan and Jessica Millikan had a harder time. They came back from a 1st set loss to win the second set easily 6-2. However, things stalled as they lost the 3rd set tie-breaker (in lieu of a full 3rd set) 10-4 to even up the match.
Next up was the singles matches. Rachel Shade jumped out to a 5-4 lead in her first set but couldn’t hold on to her lead, losing it 7-5, then lost the 2nd set 6-3. Kara Slusser finished off her opponent in quick fashion 6-2, 6-1 to even up the team score at 2-2. That left Sarah Gregory’s match at 3S to be the 3rd and winning point for either team. After falling behind in the 1st set she came back to force a tie-breaker, which she lost 7-2. She then took a lead in the 2nd set, only to lose it 6-4.
Coach Brian Smith, “This was a tough one for a coach to take. We had so many chances to win this one. Everyone is getting better and as I have mentioned before, confidence is an issue that needs to be addressed. Winning is the best thing to boost confidence, but a record of 0-12 is certainly not helping. We have one more match to try and get a win. All but one of this year’s varsity team is basically new to varsity. Hopefully everyone will be back next season (minus Senior Rachel Shade) with a year of experience and the confidence of playing that year.”
The varsity is now 0-12. The JV is 1-10.
The next match is Monday at Blue River Valley in a contest rescheduled due to weather.
New Castle 3 Blackford 2
1s Rachel Shade, L 7-5, 6-3
2s Kara Slusser, W 6-2, 6-1
3s Sara Gregory, L 7-6(7-2), 6-4
1d Jessica Millikan & Shelby Sullivan, L 6-3, 2-6, 3rd set tie breaker (10-4) 2d Nancy Cole & Brianna Phillips, W 6-2, 6-1