By Steven Kochersperger
With just a week left in the regular season portion of the High School tennis year the Mount Vernon Wildcat tennis team looks to be peaking at the right time. The Lady Cats are on a roll and have had a dramatic turn in their season. Mount Vernon won both match-ups this week, both against conference foes, to find themselves with an overall record of 6-5. Those wins against Boonville and Vincennes Lincoln show that the ladies are playing their best tennis and just at the right time.
The number one singles spot seems to be a turnstile as the Cats had to turn to their third player of the year. After losing Sara O’Neil to injury and Livia Hopper, the Lady Cats had to go with Hayley Salaman. And while many high school athletes would feel the pressure and seem to fold, Salaman seems to be embracing the new opportunity, doing whatever it takes to get the team a win.
Salaman split her two match ups this week dropping one to the Alices and winning one against the Pioneers. Salaman defeated Boonville’s Macy Dimmett 6-1, 6-2 to help her team pick up the all important number one tennis spot win last Monday.
The number two and number three spots were perfect this week for the Wildcats. Zoe Burkhart, playing in the number two spot right now, defeated Boonville’s Agata Przondziono 6-1, 6-1 before turning around the next day to defeat Vincennes Lincoln’s Claire Dillon 6-1, 6-2 to gain herself a perfect week.
Wildcat Megan McCarty also had a perfect week for Mount Vernon defeating Boonville’s Kaleigh Howard 6-0, 6-0 before turning around to beat her Alices opponent Allison Dong 6-1, 6-1.
The other spot on the Wildcat roster that went 2-2 this past week was the number one doubles spot. Riley Keating and Brooke Simpkins won both of their matches to help Mount Vernon clinch both wins. Keating and Simpkins beat their Boonville opponents 7-6(4), 6-1 as well as their Vincennes Lincoln opponents 6-1, 6-3.
In number two doubles Wildcat players Katie Huff and Emily Keitel split a pair of match-ups defeating Vincennes Lincolns’ Malayia Ellis and Cassidy Szady 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 on Tuesday afternoon.
Overall the Wildcats were able to defeat Boonville 4-1 before coming back the very next day to beat Vincennes Lincoln 5-0 in varsity tennis play.
The team hopes to continue their winning ways as they travel to Castle on Tuesday afternoon. The team will then return home Wednesday to take on Tecumseh and will then end their regular season at North High School Thursday and at the Heritage Hills Invitational on Saturday morning.
By Steven Kochersperger