BROCKWAY — The St. Marys girls tennis team earned two wins in both singles and doubles on Monday afternoon, which was enough to defeat Brockway, 4-3.
The Lady Dutch, who are the reigning Class AA team champions, took the first two matches in singles and Nos. 2 and 3 in doubles for the win. However, Brockway head coach John Hawkins liked what he saw from his team, as well.
“They were competitive, and our goal at the beginning of the season was to be competitive,” said Hawkins. “We’re competitive this year. We don’t have the numbers that we want, but the girls can play. That’s what we’re looking for.”
St. Marys No. 1 player Sarah Casey, who is now the two-time defending District 9 Class AA singles champion, defeated Brockway’s Gabby Sabatose, 6-1, 6-4 to open the match. On the court right next to Casey and Sabatose, the Lady Dutch picked up another win in straight sets as Jessica Jordan beat Savannah Buttery, 6-4, 6-0.
In the lower half of the singles events, the No. 3 singles was the match of the day between the Lady Rovers’ Taylor Raybuck and St. Marys’ Leah Gabler.
Gabler took the first set in a tiebreaker with the tiebreak ending at 7-4, but Raybuck battled back to take the second set, 6-3.
It didn’t look good for Raybuck to start the third-set tiebreaker as she dropped the first four points to Gabler.
However, the Lady Rover junior got the score back to even at 7-7 later in the set before winning the final three points to take the set and the win.
“It was a great match,” said Hawkins. “Taylor lost the first set, and came back and won the second set 6-3 and she won the tiebreaker. And she was down in the tiebreaker. She showed a lot of persistence. That’s a huge deal –fighting back and winning it. That’s big. If we can get her on her toes, she’ll be dangerous.”
Brockway evened up the match score at No. 4 singles as Cameron Hrin made quick work of St. Marys’ Taylor Klaiber with a 6-0, 6-2 win.
While singles competition was wrapping up, the No. 3 doubles match was played between Brockway’s Haley Rummel and Kira Fry, and St. Marys’ Kayla Mitchell and Izzy Ehrensberger.
The first four games of the match were breaks for each side, but Mitchell and Ehrensberger managed to settle down later in the match to take an 8-5 win.
After that match, St. Marys held a 3-2 lead in the match with the first two doubles matches yet to begin.
When the first two doubles did begin, it didn’t take long for the Lady Dutch to clinch the match as Jordan and Klaiber teamed up for a quick 8-0 shutout win over Raybuck and Hrin in the No. 2 doubles match.
The first doubles match was a back-and-forth battle through the majority of the contest between Brockway’s Sabatose and Buttery and St. Marys’ Casey and Gabler.
Both sides had slim leads throughout the match, but the two sides were eventually knotted at six games apiece.
That’s when the Brockway duo finished it off as they earned a break to go up 7-6 before Sabatose served her way through another game as Sabatose and Buttery won, 8-6.
The loss was Brockway’s (3-1) first of the season after starting off with wins against Punxsutawney, Elk County Catholic and Clearfield.
Both teams are back in action this afternoon. Brockway visits Johnsonburg, while the Lady Dutch hosts Punxsutawney.