Lady Trojan rackets take home 5th straight SWC title
Updated 1:26 pm, Thursday, September 8, 2011
Five in a row, one for the thumb!
That's what the top-seeded Weston girls tennis team states with pride after defeating second-seeded Joel Barlow Wednesday in the SWC championship for its fifth straight SWC title in raising its record to 16-1. Barlow dropped to 15-2.
Lady Trojan sophomore Kimmy Guerin showed why she's the best player in the state, possibly New England and one of the best nationally with another dominating performing. The defending State Open champion Guerin bageled sophomore Alex Greenberg at first singles, 6-0, 6-0.
"Just a lot of practice, you have to focus the whole time and put the ball where I want to," Guerin said. "I stepped into the ball, took things early and moved my feet."
Guerin swatted many winners from all points in the court and forced Greenberg into many hitting errors. One time, Greenberg was caught on the baseline and Guerin deftly tipped the ball from net to one of the shallowest point on the court for an easy winner.
Although Guerin's hitting was stellar, she was even more dominating with her serve. She zinged many serves at laser speed that produced many aces and left Greenberg stunned.
"I practice my serve a lot and I work on it hard," Guerin said.
In the 17 matches she played in, Guerin served 16 bagels. The other win, she lost only one game.
Greenberg threatened to prevent Guerin from bageling her and served three straight points in the final game. However, Guerin wasn't going to surrender a game and closed out with three straight points, including the aforementioned tip and bageled her opponent.
"She was tough but I focused and never let up when I was up," Guerin said. "I wasn't nervous."
Senior Zoe Valella would play at first singles on most teams but because of Guerin's prowess, she plays second singles for Weston. Valella was steady the whole time and broke freshman Paige Twombly every time in a 6-2, 6-0 victory.
"I think my footwork was the difference," Valella said. "She was solid but I tried to keep everything steady."
At second doubles, Lady Trojan senior Caroline Toutoungi and junior Jessy Gersh won defeated sophomore Sarah McCain and freshman Alyssa Lyon 6-3, 7-6 (7-3). "We just had to stay consistent because they were consistent as well," Toutoungi said.
Gersh said, "I think it was concentration. "We were too confident in the second set and we had to bear down. In the end, it worked out."
McCain and Lyon led 5-4 in the second set before Toutoungi and Gersh won the next two games to go up 6-5. Toutoungi and Gersh had a chance to wrap up the match and even had a match point, but Gersh hit a couple of attempted overhead forehand slams from the net into -- instead of over the net.
"Jessy and I pumped each other up a lot and we worked off of each others' energy," Toutoungi said.
Toutoungi and Gersh bounced back in the tiebreaker to take a 6-1, culminating on a Toutoungi ace. After two straight Lady Falcon points, Gersh closed it out with a service ace.
"My serve was on and I had only one double-fault all match," Gersh said. "Her backhand was weaker than her forehand and I served it there. It felt very good to close it with an ace because we needed it because we weren't happy with how we played."
Weston junior Morgan Murray outlasted junior Samantha Goldburg, 7-5, 6-3 at third doubles. Goldburg's lob went out during Murray's serve on match point.
"Definitely, it came down to being patient and hitting the ball when it was ready," Murray said.
Murray's victory clinched the overall match.
"It definitely felt very good because my matches are the longest," Murray said.
Once Murray clinched, the other three matches stopped. Lady Trojan senior co-captains Emma Samson and Aly Ashmore won the first set but lost the second set at first doubles to senior co-captain Mel Reyes and junior Adriana Maconochie. At fourth singles, Barlow senior co-captain Megan Brennan won the first set but Weston junior Jennie Bear led in the second when the match was called. Senior Madison Groenings and freshman McKenzie Murray lost the first set at third doubles to Lady Falcon senior Payton Green and freshman Jessica Levine and play was halted in the second set.
"Kimmy and Zoe played clean matches," Terranova said. "Morgan hung in there like she did all year and you can't ask second doubles to do any better in winning the tiebreaker after Barlow tied it 6-6."