Coyner, Joshi/Palmer reach quar­ter­fi­nals

Buc­ca­neers sopho­more drops tough-luck three-set thriller on swel­ter­ing day

Record Observer - - Sports - By CHRIS KNAUSS ck­nauss@star­dem.com

OL­NEY — Like last sea­son, Kent Is­land’s Ca­t­rina Coyner reached the quar­ter­fi­nal round of the MPSSAA state sin­gles cham­pi­onships, and like last sea­son her high school sea­son ended there.

But un­like her fresh­man sea­son, this quar­ter­fi­nal, her sopho­more year, couldn’t have been much closer.

On a swel­ter­ing day on the hard­courts at Ol­ney Manor Recre­ational Park, Coyner bat­tled through three sets Fri­day af­ter­noon against Pat­ter­son Mill’s Brooke San­to­riello be­fore be­ing elim­i­nated on a close call de­cided by her op­po­nent.

San­to­riello said Coyner’s sec­ond serve was out in the 10th game of the third set and there was no one there to over­rule her this time, as the Pat­ter­son Mill sopho­more scored a 6-7, 6-3, 6-4 vic­tory to ad­vance to a semi­fi­nal matchup with top-seeded Mi­randa Deng of Woot­ton.

Coyner had suf­fered some serv­ing trou­bles in the first set but fought through them to even­tu­ally earn an 8-6 tiebreaker win. She also fought off a slew of match points in the third set and ral­lied from a 5-1 deficit to pull within 5-4.

That rally in­cluded one point in which an at­tend­ing of­fi­cial over­ruled an out call by San­to­riello, a rar­ity in the open­ing rounds of the tour­na­ment when sin­gle court at­ten­dants typ­i­cally stay out of the match.

Game 9 of the third set, with five deuces, epit­o­mized the equal­ity of both play­ers’ skills and de­ter­mi­na­tion.

San­to­riello jumped to a 40-0 lead be­fore Coyner ral­lied to tie the game. With ad-out, San­to­riello dou­ble faulted to give Coyner the ad­van­tage, but the Buc­ca­neers’ sopho­more sent a re­turn of serve past the base­line for the fifth deuce. San­to­riello then dou­ble-faulted again and Coyner sent a back­hand ap­proach shot deep into the court that her op­po­nent couldn’t re­turn to pull within 5-4.

Coyner was able to at­tack San­to­riello’s sec­ond serve through­out the match to gain con­trol of points, but San­to­riello ex­celled at putting the ball back in play. Break­ing serves was not un­or­di­nary and be­gan in the first set in which there were

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