Woodland sweeps Rome in tennis; Canes take pair
by David Royal
Mar 26, 2014 | 990 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Woodland’s doubles players snatched both their matches and the Lady Wildcats earned a singles victory to sneak past Rome in girls high school tennis play Tuesday, 3-2.

The Woodland boys also took Rome’s measure by that same 3-2 margin.

Lady Wildcats 3, Rome 2

The victory helped the girls team keep pace with North Paulding, who they are tied with for second place in the region behind Allatoona.

Beth Heath, head coach, said her doubles team has played stronger this year and is a big reason Woodland is in the hunt for one of the top seeds.

Katie Abernathy defeated Maggie Graham, 6-1, 6-1, at the No. 2 line for the singles victory.

At the doubles No. 1 line, Suzy Beltran and LeArian Turner defeated Mary Jo McCormack and Morgan Padgett, 6-4, 6-2, and at the doubles No. 2 line, Karlie Abernathy and freshman Ashlyn Walker beat Aliya Gardner and Hannah Silver, 6-1, 6-1.

At the singles No. 1 line, Erin Marratta lost 4-6, 2-6 to Rome’s Leah Bachner and at the singles No. 3 line Somalia Lewis lost to Natalie Doss in three sets, 5-7, 6-3, 2-6.

Heath said while Woodland had good success in doubles play, it was not an easy victory.

“Suzy and LeArian got behind 4-0 and had to battle back and reel off six in a row to win the first set,” she said.

Heath said the weather conditions challenged the netters, too.

“They all played well,” she said, “but it’s extremely challenging to play against the wind and your opponent,” she said. “You have to stay focused and understand how to play in the wind.”

Woodland improved to 7-1 in the region with the victory and is 8-1 overall.

The Lady Wildcats are now tied for second with North Paulding, a team they lost to twice last year.

Next up for Woodland is Hiram, who they visit Thursday.

Woodland 3, Rome 2

Woodland won all three of its singles matches to take a 3-2 victory over Rome.

At the singles No. 1 line, Brandon Rutledge won 6-0, 6-4 while at the singles No. 2 line Griffin Hale won 5-7, 7-6 (7-3 in the tiebreaker), 6-2. At the singles No. 3 line, Grayson Roberts earned a 6-0, 6-1 victory.

At the doubles No. 1 line, Skylar Henderson and Tanner Self lost 1-6, 0-6 while at the doubles No. 2 line, Albert McKnight and Brenton Bigger lost 2-6, 1-6.

Kevin Tant, boys tennis coach, said he decided to give Roberts a crack at singles play and it paid off.

“Grayson played at the singles line earlier this year and I thought he would be good at it,” Tant said. “It worked out for us the way I was hoping at line 3.”

He said Rutledge and Hale both are experienced at lines 1 and 2 and played up to their ability to help Woodland pick up the victory.

Tant noted Woodland is now in third place. The Wildcats are 7-2 overall and 6-2 in the region.

“We needed to beat Rome and we did what we needed to do,” he added.

Woodland has two region games remaining, Hiram, which it is scheduled to play Thursday, and North Paulding, which it is scheduled to meet Friday.

Cartersville 3, North Murray 2

The Cartersville boys and girls tennis teams closed out region play by defeating North Murray on Tuesday. The boys had their hands full in decisioning their opponents 3-2, while the girls overpowered their foes, 5-0.

The Cartersville boys earned their victory with strong play at the doubles lines, picking up both matches there, and taking a singles match.

At the singles No. 1 line, Noah Daniel, a freshman, won 6-0, 6-1.

“Noah is a very strong player with a passion for the game,” coach Melissa Moore said. “He stepped in for us when we needed him.”

At the singles No. 2 line, Elliot Smith lost 6-4, 2-6, 6-10.

“Elliot is another freshman who stepped in for us,” Moore added. “He is a very good tennis player.”

Cartersville forfeited at the singles No. 3 spot.

In doubles No. 1 play, Avery Andrews and Nathan Slocum won 6-0, 6-1, while at doubles No. 2, Adam Harper and Christian O’Dell won in three sets, 3-6, 6-2, 10-7.

Moore said coaches have been working on the team’s doubles players.

“They both have come a long way and worked really hard to improve their skills this season,” she said.

Cartersville moved to 11-4 overall and 11-3 in region play, good enough to earn a No. 2 seed.

Lady Canes 5, North Murray 0

Cartersville moved to 15-0 overall and 14-0 in the region with their defeat of North Murray.

At singles No. 1, Mallory Walker won 6-1, 6-0 while at singles No. 2 Kenly King won 6-0, 6-0. At singles No. 3, Taylor Riddle won 6-0, 6-0.

Moore said Riddle, a freshman, turned in a strong game.

“Taylor is a wonderful team player,” Moore said. “She will do whatever is needed. She has a great serve and great ground strokes. She’s also very passionate about the game and we’re really proud to have her as a member of the team. She’s a freshman and has already developed a team mentality, which is great.”

At the doubles No. 1 line, Annabeth and Charleston Fox won 6-0, 6-0 while at the doubles No. 2 line, Haley Landrum and Kendyl Westmoreland earned a 6-1, 6-0 victory.

The Cartersville girls next play on Thursday against Dalton.

Both the boys and girls teams are to play Calhoun next week in what Moore described as a major competition before entering the region tournament.