By Ben Stroup
Hayes’ girls tennis team has been on a roll to start the season, most recently cruising past host Franklin Heights 5-0 in OCC-Capital Division action Thursday in Columbus.
The Pacers, winners of three straight, have tripled last year’s win total in just four matches.
“The entire team has just worked their tails off for the past few months,” Hayes coach Julieanne McClain said. “We had open courts, conditioning and strength training all summer, so they are just starting this season in better physical condition than last year.
“We’ve been able to outlast opponents in hot and humid conditions, and have pulled out some close matches because we are more comfortable going the distance in really crucial third sets.”
The Pacers didn’t need to outlast the Falcons … they just outplayed them.
Singles winners included Anna Adams, Mallory Hackett and Jillian Goulet. Adams beat Franklin Heights’ Keiara Washington 6-4, 6-2 at first singles, Hackett beat Chantra Phomm 6-1, 6-0 at second singles and Goulet won by default at third singles.
Kara Wegmiller and Kelsey Knodell combined to beat Janeba Barete and Jasmine Hood 6-0, 6-1 at first doubles while Victoria Ungashick and Jamie Johnson smoothed out the scoring summary with a 6-1, 6-0 win at second doubles.
Liberty 3, Dublin Coffman 2
The Patriots had to battle, but picked up a key OCC-Central Division win — 3-2 over host Coffman — Thursday in Dublin.
Liberty winners included Alexia Meyer, who handled the Shamrocks’ Nethra Thenappan 6-1, 7-5 at first singles; the duo of Anna Delaney and Lizzie Radkiewicz, which notched a 6-3, 7-5 win at first doubles; and Avivah Wang and Makayla Schaefer, who were locked in a real battle (5-7, 5-4) before the Coffman team retired.
Orange 5, Big Walnut 0
The Pioneers picked up a convincing OCC-Capital Division win Thursday in Lewis Center, blanking the visiting Golden Eagles 5-0.
Orange’s Sruti Chigurupati beat Hannah Moroz 6-0, 6-1 at first singles, Sundari Vudatala handled Kayleigh Cummins 6-0, 6-0 at second singles and Isabella Prislusky defeated Lindsey Hill 6-1, 6-0 at third singles.
In doubles action, Mary Damko and Katherine Dahn teamed up to beat Lexie Kirkpatrick and Katie Germann 6-0, 6-0 and Jessie George and Abby Daniels beat Anna Faust and Abby Friend 6-0, 6-2 to seal the sweep.
Olentangy shot a 191 to pick up a tri-match win Thursday at Oakhaven, bettering New Albany (202) and Hayes (213).
The Braves’ Alex Cardi earned medalist honors with a 39.
Follow Ben Stroup on Twitter @delgazette_ben.