Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story Each side had three points on the board when Rachel Hackler and Kelsey Rutledge went to a third set with Bella Clarke and Isabella Demeis. They tied 6-6, ended up in a tie-breaker and only there, by a 7-5 margin, did Hackler and Rutledge prevail 6-4, 1-6, 7-5.Prior to that, Ella Danforth and Emma Miller had handled Elaina Mahoney and Morgan Walsh 6-0, 6-3, while in singles Lily Miller won a 7-5, 7-5 battle with Colleen Marsh and Isabella Kroon got past Danielle Copp 6-4, 7-5.Marcellus countered with Kaitlyn Kemp and Megan Mitchell handling Sofia Capozza and Olivia Walker 6-3, 6-0, with Sophia Shaw and Maddie Vetsch getting a 6-2, 7-6 (7-0) win over Kate Aberi and Meg Benedict. Just the idea that the Marcellus and Skaneateles girls tennis teams could meet for the Section III Class C team championship had to stir all those familiar with the rivalry between the two schools in so many sports.That idea turned into reality Thursday at Utica’s Mott Courts when, despite the Lakers starting as a no. 3 seed and the Mustangs as a no. 5 seed, the two would gather with the sectional title on the line.And it proved a classic, with the two sides not deciding matters until the tie-breaker of the fourth doubles match, which finally pushed Skaneateles in front to claim the championship by a 4-3 margin. When, in first singles, Kathleen DeMarle outlasted Kenna Ellis 6-1, 2-6, 6-1, the Mustangs had a third point, but by the smallest of margins, the Lakers denied Marcellus that fourth point.Things began to line up after last Tuesday’s quarterfinals, partly because undefeated top seed Clinton was knocked off by no. 8 seed Cazenovia 3-2.Meanwhile, Marcellus avoided its own surprise by ending the great run of no. 13 seed Jordan-Elbridge as the Mustangs defeated the Eagles 6-1.J-E’s lone point arrived when Anisa Bort beat DeMarle 6-1, 6-3, but Marcellus countered with Copp handling Meghan Whalen 6-3, 6-1 and Marsh winning over Wendy Carter 6-4, 6-1.Kemp and Walsh were involved in the closest of the four doubles matches, still putting together a 6-3, 7-6 victory over Katelyn Precourt and Gabrielle Skotinski 6-3, 7-6.Mahoney and Mitchell won, 6-0, 6-3, over Lexi Delfavero and Delaney Dunham. Shaw and Vetsch handled Maddie Green and Maria LaFleur 6-2, 6-2 as Clarke and Demeis got past Skylar Crysler and Hayley Holland 6-1, 6-3.Now the semifinal pitted Marcellus against Cazenovia, whom it beat 6-1 late in August. Just as strong in the rematch, the Mustangs again topped that other group of Lakers 6-1.DeMarle lost in singles, but Copp survived getting shut out in the second set to beat Nova Berger 6-0, 0-6, 6-2 as Marsh earned a 7-5, 6-2 decision over Nina Royer.As part of a doubles sweep, Mahoney and Mitchell beat Clare Douglas and Baylee Pierce 6-3, 6-1, with Kemp and Walsh beating Julia Knutsen and Emma Schwartz by those same scores. Shaw and Vetsch claimed a 6-4, 6-3 decision over Regan Dauenhauer and Mae Sayre as Clarke, now paired with Casey Conklin, beat Katie Pavelchak and Emma Thornton 6-3, 6-0.Skaneateles, meanwhile, prevailed 5-2 over no. 11 seed Manlius-Pebble Hill, sweeping all four doubles matches. Only second doubles was close, but Capozza and Sophia Soderberg worked past Emma Gross and Eden Hildebrandt 7-6, 6-4.Otherwise, the teams of Danforth-Emma Miller, Benedict-Walker and Hackler- Rutledge lost just one game in six combined sets. Ellis and Kroon lost their singles matches, but Lily Miller dominated against MPH’s Ava Benedict, prevailing 6-1, 6-3.This put the Lakers up against no. 2 seed Utica-Notre Dame in the sectional semifinals, a rematch of the 2018 final won by the Jugglers. Aided by Lily Miller’s timely comeback in third singles, Skaneateles prevailed this time 4-3.Neither Ellis nor Kroon could do much in singles against UND’s star sister duo of Ellen and Emily Lyga, who both won 6-1, 6-1, but Miller, after getting shut out in the first set by Danielle Cresci, fought all the way back to win 0-6, 6-4, 6-3.That augmented the three points won in doubles. Danforth and Emma Miller beat Samantha Fulty and Caitlin Snyder 7-5, 6-0, with Benedict and Walker handling Victoria Tran and Cindy Xing 6-3, 6-1. Hackler and Rutledge won 6-0, 6-1 over Anna Curry and Jossie Zhou. Tags: girls tennisMarcellusskaneateles
Sophomore Estella Jaeger also competed in a three-set match in the first round, taking down freshman Elise Frigout of the University of Pacific 4-6, 6-3, 6-3. The Trojans are slated to play Thursday at the ITA Oracle Masters in Malibu, Calif. “We had great results from everyone representing USC at the tournament, and it’s exciting to begin the year by taking home a title in our first event,” Swain said. The USC women’s tennis team competed in the Milwaukee Tennis Classic this weekend to open their 2019 season, in addition to the Battle in the Bay tournament in San Francisco. The Trojans left Milwaukee with a singles title win from senior captain Angela Kulikov. The Trojans look to continue their success after a 20-8 2018 season that ended in a Round of 16 loss to South Carolina. After graduating only one senior, the program will continue to build and strengthen its roster with a blend of youth and experience. Kulikov’s teammates also enjoyed a successful weekend in Milwaukee. Sophomore Danielle Wilson reached the semifinals of the MTC, defeating three top 16 seeds before her 6-2, 6-2 loss to Achong. The program also features the promotion of Rachel Manasse to assistant coach, who served as a volunteer coach on the staff this past season. With the No. 7-ranked recruiting class in the nation according to the Tennis Recruiting Network, the new class comprised of players including Carson Branstine, Eryn Cateyano and four-star Payton Saca figures to be a strength for the Trojans in 2019 and beyond. “Angela came into the tournament prepared to compete and executed her game plan throughout the event,” Swain told USC Athletics. “It was tough to transition from indoors to outdoors throughout the weekend, but Angela handled it well and competed at an exceptionally high level.” Kulikov was seeded No. 13 in the singles draw for tournament, and her path to the championship was not easy. She defeated both the No. 3 and No. 7 seeds on the road to the final against No. 5-seeded sophomore Daevenia Achong of the University of Miami. “I’m very excited to be back this season as an assistant coach,” Manasse told USC Athletics. “It’s such an amazing opportunity. This team has so much potential, and I can’t wait to be a part of their continued success.” Milwaukee wasn’t the only destination for the women’s team this week, as several Trojans participated in the Battle of the Bay Classic in San Francisco. Senior Sydney Van Alphen defeated top-seeded sophomore Solymar Colling of the University of San Diego in three sets 1-6, 7-5, 6-3. Both Van Alphen and Jaeger advanced to the tournament’s quarterfinal, while freshman Payton Saca gained her first collegiate experience by winning an extra match 6-2, 6-3 against freshman Alicia Yue from the University of San Francisco. Jaeger and Van Alphen were also paired in the doubles bracket and lost 8-2 to Arizona graduate student Abby Amos and junior Talya Zandberg. Kulikov’s title earned her a wild card spot in the Oracle ITA National Fall Championships in Newport Beach this November. Wilson and Kulikov teamed up in the doubles bracket and reached the semifinals along with the duo of senior Constance Branstine and junior Ana Neffa, but both pairs fell short of the championship match. Kulikov narrowly defeated Achong 7-6, (5) in a close first set tiebreak. She went on to take the second set 6-4, securing the MTC title. Head coach Alison Swain believed Kulikov was well prepared heading into her matches and that she maintained an elite degree of focus. Editor’s note: This article published Wednesday misidentified a photo of Rianna Valdes as Angela Kulikov. The article has been updated online. The Daily Trojan regrets the error.