By Ben Stroup
Olentangy’s girls tennis team started league play on a positive note, blanking host Big Walnut 5-0 Tuesday afternoon in Sunbury.
The Braves’ most dominant performance came at second singles, where Kathleen Jones knocked off Erika Kessler 6-1, 6-0. Bri Brdicka and Namrata Arya accounted for Olentangy’s other singles wins. Brdicka handled Macie Kercsmar 6-2, 6-1 at first singles while Arya beat Abigail Friend 6-1, 6-1 at third singles.
The Golden Eagles, meanwhile, were much more competitive on the doubles courts despite dropping both. Big Walnut’s Clare Mexicott and Elisabeth Yuhas won the first set of their match at second doubles before Alyssa Shakley and Olivia Gornichec rallied for a 4-6, 7-5, 1-0 win.
Olentangy’s Madison Luse and Elyssa Ackerman completed the sweep with a 6-3, 6-1 win over Big Walnut’s Maddie Pahl and Anna Faust at first doubles.
•Liberty tweaked it’s lineup, but the result was the same: another 5-0 win.
After sweeping away Chillicothe to start the season, the Patriots, with several players competing in different spots than the ones they patrolled in the opener, blanked host Central Crossing in Tuesday’s OCC-Central Division showdown.
Lizzie Radkiewicz, the only singles standout who also played singles in the opener, cruised past Tara Thomas 6-1, 6-0 at first singles, Cecilia Ko nabbed a 6-0, 6-3 win at second singles and Natalie Perry earned a 6-1, 6-1 decision at third singles.
In doubles action, Liberty’s Rachael Carline and Makayla Schaefer rolled to a 6-0, 6-0 win at first doubles while Cellini Ko and Sahana Seth won 6-0, 6-0 at second doubles.
•Hayes’ singles players battled, but none of the three could make their team’s pair of doubles wins stand up as the Pacers were edged by the host Wolves 3-2 during Tuesday’s OCC-Capital Division opener in Worthington.
“We have been facing a lot of injuries in our singles lineup over the past week, and that makes a tough opponent event tougher,” Hayes coach Julieanne McClain said. “But our girls are getting better every time they are on the court, and that’s all I can ask for as a coach.”
The Pacers’ wins came courtesy of the doubles teams … and they were well earned. Noel Beyer-Hermsen and Juliette Rike combined to notch a thrilling 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 10-5 win at first doubles and the duo of Kara Wegmiller and Mallory Hackett, who were up against Kilbourne’s Lexi Stevens and Lauryn Thomas, outlasted the pair 6-7 (6-8), 6-4, 12-10 at second doubles.
Ben Stroup can be reached on Twitter @delgazette_ben.