Sandy girls take aim at district tennis title
The Sandy girls tennis team finished off a fantastic regular season by going 10-1 in dual meets. The Pioneers ended up taking second in league after falling to Wilsonville 6-2 back on April 17.
Even with the loss to the Wildcats, Sandy's goal is to repeat as district champs in the Northwest Oregon Conference.
"We absolutely want to get the team title," Sandy head coach Greg Thorson said. "We had a chance against Wilsonville. They may have been slightly better but we could have won."
The NWOC district tournament takes place this Tuesday and Wednesday at Parkrose High School. With the experienced athletes on the Sandy squad, it is reasonable to think that they can steal the top spot from Wilsonville.
"It's definitely something we can accomplish," Thorson said. "We obviously have some really strong doubles, but we have some really strong singles players too."
Here are the top players that have a chance to take home a district title and/or advance to the state meet.
Emma Reiser/Sydney Stratton (No. 1 doubles): The duo was undefeated in the regular season and qualified for the state tournament last year as sophomores.
Emma Donahue/Kaitlyn Poulin (No. 2 doubles): Only lost one match during the regular season. Although this is their first year playing together, both qualified for the state meet last season with different partners.
Stacia Howes/Avery Whitlock (No. 3 doubles): A team that could be the number one doubles squad with most teams in the district. Could sneak into the top four to nab a spot at state.
"(Howes and Whitlock) are going to surprise some people," Thorson said. "They should be seeded, but probably won't be because they have been playing sat the number three spot."
Maggie Fox (No. 1 singles): Will likely the number four overall seed in the tournament. If she plays up to her seeding, she will advance to the district semifinals at the state tournament.
"On a good day, (Fox) can play with anybody," Thorson said. "This is her last shot and she wants it really bad so she's going to go out and play her heart out."
Madisona Krening (No. 2 singles): Has shown over the course of the season that she can hang with some of the best singles players in the district. Krening won a set at district against the number three overall seed at districts last season.
"Madison has a decent shot as well," Thorson said. "She has been right there against some really good players."
While Sandy will count on several of their top players qualifying for state, Thorson acknowledged that the lower level matches might just be the ones that help the Pioneers claim the district title.
"A lot of times, these things aren't won with the top players," Thorson said. "They are won with those fourth or fifth doubles teams that end up winning a match or two for you in the early rounds. We have talked about how the unexpected person might end up being the difference."