After being postponed until Thursday evening, all three Montgomery County tennis teams were eager to begin sectional play at Crawfordsville. Southmont would take on the host and defending sectional champion Athenians while the Chargers would square off with Parke Heritage.
After a venue change thanks to rain as all four teams finished play at the indoor Collett Tennis Center at Wabash, it was the Athenians and Wolves who would come away with victories as CHS defeated the Mounties in a competitive 5-0 sweep, and Parke Heritage would come away with a thrilling 3-2 win over the Chargers as the match came down to a third set at two doubles to decide a winner.
Athenians best Mounties in competitive 5-0 affair
After falling 4-1 to the Athenians in the first week of the season, Southmont would get their chance at redemption against their county rival, unfortunately for the Mounties the result would be the same in the 5-0 loss. The score however doesn’t tell the whole story about how close the matches were between the county rivals.
At one singles Samantha Rohr defeated Hanna Long 6-2, 6-6 (7-0), Reese Minnette would outlast Bailey Barker at two singles for the Athenians in a 7-5, 6-4 win. Harmony Taylor would defeat Marley Jones at three singles 6-2, 7-6(2). Cathleen McGrady and Lilly Klingbeil were victorious over Dori Frederick and Courtlyn Carpenter 6-2, 6-2 and rounding out the wins for CHS was the tandem of Elyse Widmer and Mia Wagner at two doubles with a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Kela Johnson and Chaney Scott.
“Our girls continue to just go out and play with a ton of confidence,” Athenian coach Cara Amundson said. “Our doubles really got us going and we were able to take care of business. I know that we’ll be ready to go tomorrow night.”
For Southmont and coach Rob Reimondo while the result didn’t his teams way as their season comes to an end, he’s still proud of the way his team fought and battled against a tough Athenian team.
“I’m proud of the effort that the girls gave tonight,” he said. “We had some very close matches and you have to give Crawfordsville a lot of credit. They were able to come through when the points mattered the most. Unfortunately it just wasn’t in the cards for us. It’s going to be hard saying goodbye to our three seniors especially after not being able to give them a sectional title. They’ve been the heart of our program and gives us a lot to build from in the future.”
Those three seniors are Frederick, Barker, and Scott.
Crawfordsville will now get ready to take on the Wolves in Friday’s sectional championship which will be back at CHS beginning at 4:45.
Chargers fall to Wolves in thrilling three set finale
It came down to the final match of the night to determine whether the Wolves or Chargers would take on Crawfordsville for the sectional title. As both teams were tied at 2-2, the match came down to two doubles. The Chargers Courtney Engels and Shayana Ratcliff was able to force a winner take all third set after losing a dropping the first set 6-6(4-7). However the Chargers would fall just short of a sectional championship appearance as Ratcliff and Engels would fall 4-6 in the final set as the Wolves’ Katelyn Williams and Hannah Thurman took the match 6-6(7-4), 6-6(4-7), 6-4.
The two wins for North Montgomery came at one singles as senior Carlie DeSmet defeated Hannah O’Brien 6-3, 6-2. Sydney Neideffer picked up a win at two singles due to injury to the Wolves’ Rebekah Ayers.
At three singles Jenna Brown defeated the Chargers Paige Hudson 6-0, 6-1. The one doubles team of Allison Guard and Sydnee Turner fell to Grace Ramsay and Kristen Wood 6-1, 6-4.
All coaches hope to have their teams playing their best come the sectional and even thought the result will show a loss, North Montgomery coach Lori Guard thought her team played the best they had all season.
“We looked like a completely different team tonight than we had all season and we came ready to play,” Guard said. “Unfortunately it didn’t go our way but we have nothing to be discouraged about with our play this evening.”
With DeSmet’s win at one singles, that qualifies her to now compete in the individual tournament on Tuesday back at CHS.
“I’m extremely proud of her,” Guard said of senior one singles player. “Carlie hit the ball really tonight she had a confidence about her that I haven’t seen from her all season. She’s one of the smartest and most cerebral players out on the court. That is able to carry her a long ways when she’s out on the court.”
The Chargers will graduate four seniors as while DeSmet gets to continue playing for a few more days, Turner, Guard, and Engels all concluded their tennis careers on Thursday.