Wills wins epic match, but Lady Bulldogs edged by Bluffton
Thursday, August 28, 2014 10:32 PM
ADA - Ada junior Mackenzie Wills won the battle at first singles, but visiting Bluffton took the overall tennis "war" Thursday evening by nipping the Lady Bulldogs 3-2 at the park courts.
Their third 3-2 loss in as many nights dropped scrappy Ada to 8-3, while the Pirates improved to 4-2.
Wills lost the first set of her marathon match to Maggie Fett at first singles, 6-3. She then gritted her way back into contention in set two, forcing a tiebreaker at 6-6.
Wills then outlasted Fett 7-3 to win the tiebreak and force a decisive third set.
The sun was setting as the marathon final set unfolded in a match that took three and a half hours to finish. The consistently metronomic, flat groundstrokes and fine angle shots of Fett were offset by the gritty hustle and solid stroking of Wills.
The gutty Ada junior ran down ball after ball from side to side, often lunging to save short balls and continue the rally.
The baseline-oriented match featured many rallies of 25 shots or more, as neither player would give in and the errors were few. Wills edged in front 4-3 in the third, but Fett rallied to break serve and lead 6-5.
Wills then began hitting out and harder, and her authoritative groundstrokes helped forced another tiebreaker, this one to decide the match.
Wills inched ahead 4-3, then won the next two points on long rallies to reach match point. On the ensuing point, Wills hammered a high backhand to the corner for what appeared to be a winner, but it was called out to keep Fett alive, down 6-4.
However, the Ada junior closed out the occasionally contentious struggle on her second match point, via a rare Fett error forced by a strong Wills forehand.
With both knees bloodied from scraping the court during her hustling returns, a happy Wills agreed afterward that "it was my toughest match ever. I never went to two tiebreakers in one match before," she noted.
"I am so proud of you," said teammate Olivia Gonder after the hard-fought 3-6, 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (7-4) victory.
Gonder and Tessa Coulson combined to post the other Ada win at second doubles in straight sets, 6-2, 6-4.
The hard-hitting and competitive Meredith Marshall dropped her own grimly-fought match 7-6 (7-5), 6-3 to southpaw Lucie Fett at second singles.
Gritty Meredith Morgan of Ada battled hard but was nipped at third singles in another long struggle decided in a third-set tiebreak 3-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5).
Bluffton 3, Ada 2
Individual match results:
#1 Singles Mackenzie Wills (Ada) defeated Maggie Fett (B) 3-6, 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (7-4)
#2 Singles Lucie Fett (B) def. Meredith Marshall (Ada) 7-6 (7-5), 6-3
#3 Singles Katie Wright (B) def. Meredith Morgan (Ada) 3-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5)
#1 Doubles Juliane Hotmire/Brielle Hamilton (B) def. Libbie Milks/Quinn High (Ada) 6-2, 6-3
#2 Doubles Tessa Coulson / Olivia Gonder (Ada) def. Sara Bunka /Jennie Lee (B) 6-2, 6-4
After a busy week, Ada is idle due to the Hardin County Fair until Tuesday, September 9 when they host Upper Sandusky.
T-Birds nip Lady Bulldogs
ADA - Visiting Lima Central Catholic narrowly beat Ada 3-2 in girls tennis action Wednesday evening at the park courts.
Their second tough 3-2 loss in as many nights dropped the Lady Bulldog record to a still-impressive 8-2, while LCC improved to 6-4 with the close victory.
Mackenzie Wills and Meredith Marshall posted straight-set wins to pace the Ada attack at first and third singles, respectively.
LCC edged Ada in a three-set nailbiter at first doubles to help provide the difference in the outcome.
LCC 3, Ada 2
Individual match results:
#1 Singles Mackenzie Wills (Ada) defeated Kacey Bradshaw (LCC) 6-3, 6-0 #2
Singles Emily Janowski (LCC) def. Alex James (Ada) 6-0, 6-1
#3 Singles Meredith Marshall (Ada) def. Meredith Bruno (LCC) 6-2, 6-4
#1 Doubles Natalie Patricio/Sophia Venturella (LCC) def. Libbie Milks/Quinn High (Ada) 6-4, 2-6, 7-5
#2 Doubles Olivia Stanley / Shelby Young (LCC) def. Tessa Coulson/Olivia Gonder (Ada) 6-0, 6-4