The LDHS Lady Raider Tennis team battled Greenwoodin four match tie-breakers to pick up its third region win in a rain make-up match at the City Courts Tuesday night.
The Raiders picked up wins at numbers two through five and picked up the #1 doubles win to down the Eagles 5-2, a replica of last year’s opening region win.
“Last year we beat Greenwood twice to move up a notch in the region; this year our first goal was this win against Greenwood. The rain postponed us, but we got the win tonight,” LDHS Coach David Corley said.
Raider #4 Kathleen Horner got off the courts first, taking a 6-2, 6-0 win. Horner dominated play against Abby Lay, following through on every stroke, staying behind the baseline, and staying in the entire match – all aspects of her game she has worked to improve. “Tonight, her game came together. She played like we know she is capable of tonight. It was great to see,” Corley said.
#2 Rebecca Corley continued the dominant play she began last week – driving her opponent around the court, playing smart by placing balls, and not hesitating to put pace on the ball. “Rebecca is playing the best tennis I’ve ever seen her play. She’s playing smart; she’s playing hard. She’s running; she’s hitting with pace. She’s not letting down; she’s playing her own game,” Coach Corley said. “Last year, Rebecca played Sydney Danks at #4, and they went to a match tiebreak in their second match. They have both improved, and they pushed each other. I was thrilled to see Rebecca take her in two [6-3, 7-5],” Coach Corley said.
#1 Sara Kalyn Croker lost to Kristin White (4-6, 1-6) before teaming with Rebecca Corley to defeat White and Danks 3-6, 6-3, 10-6. The Raiders’ #1 team played their best match of the season, “probably because the Greenwood team was an even match to our girls. We had to dig deep to get this win. Greenwood’s #2 understands doubles and played the right angles and really strong volleys. We fell behind early, but Rebecca played fantastic net tonight, and SK [Croker] covered the court to make some fantastic shots,” according to Coach Corley. In the match’s final point Danks painted one down the alley past Corley, but as the Greenwood fans cheered what they thought was a winner, Croker got to the ball, putting it back to Greenwood, who returned it only to see Corley cut it off in the net for the winning shot.
#3Brittany Horner showed grit and determination to come back from a 2-6 first set to take the second 6-4 and tough out the match tiebreaker 10-8. The Raiders played four match tiebreakers in their win, winning three. The third came as #5 Ellen Young dropped the first set 4-6 but dominated the second 6-3, battling deep ground strokes with Sarah Whittington into a 10-3 tiebreak win.
Contributed by Coach Corley