Under a blazing sun Thursday, the Lakeside girls tennis team turned the heat up on yet another team.
The Lady Panthers (19-1) lost to Starr’s Mill 3-2 back on Feb. 9 and no one has gotten close to them since. Lee County, the Lady Panthers second round opponent in the 2012-2013 GHSA Class AAAAA Girls State Tennis Tournament, was sent home quickly as the Lady Panthers dispatched them 4-0.
The Lady Panthers were leading the fifth match when play was stopped.
“I didn’t know that we would dominate as much as we did today, I thought it would be closer, but I also know how well our girls have been playing,” said Lady Panthers head coach Miranda Whitmire, whose squad eliminated the Lady Trojans (12-4) in the first round last year.
The round of eight is where the Lady Panthers have been halted the past two years. They got one monkey off their back this year, beating Greenbrier three times in regular season play and won the region title, which the Lady Wolfpack claimed the past four years. Kayla Hergott, the No. 1 singles feels confident the Lady Panthers can break through that barrier in their next match, especially since they have been unbeatable since Feb. 9.
“We haven’t lost, any of us, a single match since after the tournament,” Hergott said. “Hopefully we can pull out three of them. We’re definitely hoping to win the next one so we can get to the final four.”
Hergott and No. 2 singles Taylor Richards rolled to 6-0, 6-0 victories and have yet to lose a game in the state tournament. Anneliese Leahy was winning her match when play was halted.
Richards said she didn’t do anything special in the win.
“I served pretty good,” said Richards, adding that she used her serve to help set up points.
The No. 1 doubles team of Sara Hess and Alexis Ellis won 6-1, 6-0 while Katie Burton and Brittany McLeod cruised 6-0, 6-0.
Second round play doesn’t have to be completed until Tuesday April 30, so the Lady Panthers don’t know who their next round opponent will be or where the contest will be played.