High School Tennis
Northgate teams end successful year
The end of the high school tennis season may not have produced a celebration for Northgate girls and boys lineups. But it sure gave the program even more optimism heading into 2015.
Both teams, coached by Justin Crews, had respective seasons come to a close with 3-0 losses against Region 2-AAAAA champion Lakeside-Evans on Tuesday. It included an effort by Lakeside’s defending Class AAAAA champion girls program.
The losses, however, capped off a successful season that had both Northgate teams reaching the state playoffs for the second consecutive year — a first in program history.
The girls match pitted a veteran Lakeside team dominated by seniors against a starting Lady Viking lineup monopolized by underclassmen that expect to return next spring.
All five contested lines managed to win at least one game led by a hard-fought effort at No. 2 doubles by Lauren Handley and Sydney Wells.
The duo battled through a tiebreaker in the opening set before falling 7-6, 6-2. Both doubles matches were well contested, with Northgate’s No. 1 pairing of Sarah Edmonds and Sarah Guilot falling 6-2, 6-2.
Both Northgate lineups finished as the No. 4 seed out of a deep Region 4-AAAAA alignment led by Fayette powerhouses Starr’s Mill and McIntosh, which defeated Evans’ girls 4-1 to advance to the second round. Both teams from Union Grove also qualified for the state playoffs out of 4-AAAAA.
On Tuesday, the Lady Vikings’ three singles players found themselves outmatched by Lakeside seniors. Danielle Rankin lost 6-1, 6-1 and Hayley Hasberger fell 6-1, 6-2 at respective No. 1 and No. 2 positions. At No. 3 singles, Ally Chenowith dropped a 6-1, 6-0 decision.
Lakeside’s boys also reached the Sweet 16 for the second consecutive year before falling to Union Grove in the Elite 8 in 2013. Last year’s championship pitted 4-AAAAA foes Starr’s Mill and Union Grove in the finals, won by Starr’s Mill.
The Vikings had a tough time picking up any momentum against Lakeside on Tuesday with only two of its five lines managing to win more than a game among straight set losses.
Cole Chenowith battled at No. 2 singles before falling 6-4, 6-1 while Northgate’s No. 2 doubles team of Andrew Kelley and Peyton Thomas fell 6-0, 6-3.
Both Larry Sloan and Nate Taylor were shut out in straight sets at No. 1 and No. 3 singles, respecitively, the first time in varsity play that Sloan had suffered a 6-0, 6-0 loss.
The Vikings’ top doubles team of Daniel Blocker and Alex Waldren also were shut out by Lakeside’s No. 1 pairing.