Lake Oswego girls, Lakeridge boys step up at district tennis
While the final story of the 2018 Three Rivers League district tennis tournament has yet to be written — the tournament finished on Wednesday after the Review's press deadline — the Lake Oswego and Lakeridge tennis teams definitely made their presences felt.
In girls play at the tournament — held Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at Portland Tennis Center — third-seeded Laker freshman Mariam Nechiporuk battled all the way into Wednesday's girls singles championship against top-seeded Tigard sophomore Lizzy Stephens, the reigning Class 6A state champion.
Nechiporuk got there by beating Sherwood's Analisa DuFrene 6-0, 6-1, West Linn's Gretel Rajamoney 6-1, 6-0, Tualatin's Autumn Lewis 6-4, 6-4 in the quarterfinals, and second-seeded Lakeridge senior Lilly Stephens 7-5, 4-6, 6-4 in the semifinals.
Also in singles, LO freshman Jackie Booth will play in the consolation finals on Wednesday.
For Lakeridge, Stephens won three straight times to reach the semis against Nechiporuk, beating three straight opponents in straight sets, including a 6-2,6-0 victory over Tualatin's Averi Lewis in the quarterfinals.
Lakeridge junior Gigi Davies also played her way into the quarterfinals before losing to Stevens 6-1, 6-0.
In doubles action, Lake Oswego was just about everywhere, with top-seeded seniors Melisha Dogra and Anna Lowy advancing all the way to the tournament championship where they'll have to face second-seeded teammates Ally Hock and Phoebe Walsh in a rematch of last year's TRL title contest.
Both doubles teams were dominant in their road to the finals, with Hock and Walsh losing just three games per match while Lowy and Dogra have yet to drop a game.
As they did last year, the Lakers absolutely bludgeoned the field with their doubles play, also sending sophomore Arielle Bloom and freshman partner Julia Yazhari all the way to the semifinals, where they eventually dropped a 6-2, 6-1 decision to Hock and Walsh.
LO's fourth doubles team was tough, too, with senior Jennifer Ruan and sophomore Julia Lininger-White playing their way into the tournament quarterfinals.
In boys singles play, top-seeded Lakeridge junior Jack Ninteman won four straight times to reach the tournament championship, where he'll face third-seeded West Linn sophomore Logan Thompson. Ninteman has lost just two games thus far and beat Tualatin's Will Havenar 6-1, 6-0 in his semi.
For Lake Oswego, second-seeded sophomore Gabe Horwitz won three straight times in impressive fashion to reach the semifinals before falling to Thompson 6-0, 6-4. Lake Oswego's Alex Best and Connor Whittington also played well and advanced to the tournament quarterfinals.
In doubles play, it will be an all-Pacer matchup in the final with top-seeded Lakeridge sophomores Dante Sterling and Ethan Davies squaring off against sixth-seeded senior teammate Erik Svoboda and his junior partner Andrew Slominski. Svoboda and Slominski earned their spot in the finals by upsetting second-seeded Justin Lawrence and Grant Grainger of West Linn in their semifinal 6-1, 5-7, 7-6.
Lake Oswego seniors Alex Roark and Owen Chu also stepped up, playing their way into the tournament quarterfinals.
Complete tournament coverage will appear in next week's edition of the Review.