6A girls tennis — Doubles duo places third, singles player takes fourth at the district tournament

McMINNVILLE — For the first time in recent memory, Newberg will send two flights to the state tournament after getting standout performances from its top singles player and top doubles tandem at the Pacific Conference district tournament over the weekend.

Senior Sam Russo lost a total of two games during her first three matches Thursday and Friday at Pacific University in Forest Grove, but could not get past Tigard’s Courtney Roshak in the semifinals Saturday morning at Linfield College. by: SETH GORDON - State qualifier - Newberg senior Sam Russo reaches for a shot during her 6-0, 6-0 first-round victory in the Pacific Conference district tournament May 15 at Pacific University. Russo will face Adina Talpos of David Douglas in the first round of the state tournament Thursday at the Portland Tennis Center.

Seeded third for the tournament after a strong regular season, Russo will be the league’s No. 4 representative at the state tournament after losing 7-5, 6-3 in a good battle versus No. 4 seed Neyen Essien of Century in the third-place match.

Russo will now face Adina Talpos of David Douglas Thursday morning at the Portland Tennis Center.

Beralas and Wiltshire, who were the No. 4 seed after playing at No. 1 singles for the Tigers all year, needed three sets to get past Maddie Meade and Alisha Inkens of Tualatin in the second round, winning 4-6, 7-6 (7-2), 6-3.

The duo then dispatched No. 6 pairing Caitlin Baker and Shay Bristow, who had played 1 and 2 singles for McMinnville most of the season, 6-4, 6-3, to qualify for state.

Although the duo fell to top-seeds Debbie Kim and Riley Steele in the semifinals, Beralas and Wiltshire rebounded to beat Forest Grove’s Karimi Nyamu and Natalie Brandt, the No. 3 seed, 6-3, 6-4, to place third.

Waiting for Newberg in the first round at state Thursday morning will be Jesuit’s No. 2 doubles team.

In other singles action, Kassie Grove was given a tough draw despite having a strong season at No. 2 singles for Newberg and fell 7-6 (7-3), 6-0 to Roshak in the second round.

Newberg’s other two singles players, Delaney Spellman and Ashley Johnston both ran into seeded players in the first round, with Spellman falling 6-0, 6-0 to three-time district champion Eka Essien and Johnston losing 6-0, 6-2 to her sister, No. 4 seed Neyen.

In doubles, Ashley Thompson and Kaylee Pattullo advanced to the quarterfinals before bowing out 6-1, 6-1 to the No. 2 seed from McMinnville. Melissa Lattig and Rachel Lindquist, as well as Morgan Johnson and Naivit Velasquez, were beaten in the first round to round out the Newberg effort.

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