Hunt­ing­town ten­nis top­ples La Plata

Tougas broth­ers, White win sin­gles as Hur­ri­canes fin­ish 13-0

Maryland Independent - - Sports - By TED BLACK tblack@somd­news.com

On a day in which bal­loons lined the outer fence at the La Plata High School ten­nis courts hon­or­ing the War­riors se­niors who com­peted in their fi­nal home matches on Fri­day, Hunt­ing­town proved less than gen­er­ous guests as the Hur­ri­canes de­parted with an 8-1 South­ern Mary­land Ath­letic Con­fer­ence non­di­vi­sion vic­tory just be­fore dusk.

Hunt­ing­town ju­nior Kai Tougas has made quick work of his ri­vals all sea­son in boys No. 1 sin­gles events and younger brother Taiyo Tougas has had equal suc­cess at No. 2 sin­gles as a fresh­man. Hur­ri­canes ju­nior Bailey White has played well all sea­son at No. 1 girls sin­gles as well and also had lit­tle trou­ble with La Plata se­nior Michal Kit­trell, 6-2, 6-0. Hunt­ing­town wrapped up the reg­u­lar sea­son with a per­fect 13-0 over­all record.

“I thought my back­hand was a lot bet­ter,” said White, who went 9-3 this spring with set­backs to Leonard­town’s Sa­man­tha Sch­walbe, North­ern’s Rachel Clark and Lackey’s Azuri Hughes. “My back­hand has got­ten bet­ter all sea­son. My fore­hand was good to­day and my serves were good. I had a lit­tle bit of a slow start, but af­ter I got warmed up I played much bet­ter.”

White’s quick vic­tory gave her and coach Rob Martin am­ple time to fol­low the dou­bles matches on ad­ja­cent courts. In mixed dou­bles, Hunt­ing­town’s Sam Bethge and Syd­ney Nader de­feated La Plata’s Griffin Moyer and Erin Quar­tararo, 6-2, 3-6, 6-2. The girls’ No. 1 dou­bles match took much longer, as La Plata’s Sarah De­nault and Pree­ta­man Virk fi­nally got the bet­ter of the Hur­ri­canes’ Anna Er­soy and Han­nah Ken­nerly, 6-2, 5-7, 6-3.

“That was a great match,” La Plata coach Eulo Re­gala said. The War­riors fell to 9-3 over­all and fin­ished up their reg­u­lar sea­son on Tuesday ver­sus

McDonough to make up an April 27 post­pone­ment. “It was def­i­nitely the best match of the day. It was get­ting al­most dark when they fin­ished. It went back and forth with a lot of close sets, but Sarah and Pree­ta­man pulled it out. That was the only match we won, but there were a lot of matches with a lot of close games that could have gone ei­ther way.”

One of those ex­tremely close matches evolved on an­other ad­ja­cent court as Hunt­ing­town’s Emily Mitchell fi­nally pre­vailed over La Plata se­nior Madi­son Smith in straight sets, 6-4, 7-5, in girls No. 2 sin­gles. Dur­ing the mid­way point of the sec­ond set, Mitchell and Smith had sev­eral pro­longed vol­leys with the ball cross­ing over the net no less than 15 times on four ral­lies and 22 on one oc­ca­sion.

“That was one of those matches where on an­other day maybe Madi­son gets one or two of those points and it goes all three sets,” Re­gala said. “Even though it went in straight sets, it re­ally was very close. The SMAC tour­na­ment should be very in­ter­est­ing. We lost three matches to Great Mills, Leonard­town and Hunt­ing­town, but a lot of games in those matches were very close and could have gone ei­ther way.”

STAFF PHOTO BY TED BLACK

La Plata’s mixed dou­bles tan­dem of Erin Quar­tararo and Griffin Moyer went all three sets against Hunt­ing­town’s Syd­ney Nader and Sam Bethge, but the Hur­ri­canes tan­dem pre­vailed 6-2, 3-6, 6-2.

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