Five times. For the fifth time this season, Valley lost a tennis match 3-2. Tonight, the loss brought an abrupt end their most successful season in years. Columbia City delivered the blow tripping the Vikings 3-2.
Winners for Valley were Gi Gi Engstrand and the doubles team of Kaitlin Neese and Haley Baker. Engstrand dominated Madison Minor 6-1, 6-1. The ever improving sophomore was in control the entire way and never let Minor get untracked. Baker and Neese ran over Grace Newton and Gracelynn Martinez 6-2, 6-1. They completed their banner doubles season with 12-5 mark and have a bright future with two years left to play.
Mackenzie Costello and Hannah Parson, who played out of the one and two single positions all year, lost their matches, but as sophomores are a critical part of the program for the next two seasons. The experience they gained this season, will pay dividends over the next two years.
The match came down to a three setter, between Vikings Tiphanie Hodge and Makenna Bradley playing Hailey Cearbaugh and Addison Bishop. The teams split the first two sets and were square at 3-3 in the third, At that point Cearbaugh and Bishop went on a three game run to end the match. The loss was only the second setback all season for Hodge and Bradley. They finished up an all-star season with a 15-2 record.
As disappointing as the loss was, the Vikings took some major strides this year. With a strong group of girls coming back, the future looks very bright for Valley Tennis.