St. Aloysius tennis takes South State

Published 7:50 am Wednesday, May 2, 2018

The St. Aloysius girls’ tennis team took home the MAIS Class AAA South State title on Tuesday, in as narrow of a victory as possible, thanks in large part to quality play in its doubles play.

Taylor Chewning and Ashley Jarratt won the No. 2 doubles championship, and two other doubles teams advanced to next week’s Class AAA state tournament by finishing second.

Chewning and Jarrat were dominant, winning 6-2, 6-0 over Laurel Christian, and 6-1, 6-0 over Silliman for the championship.

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The Flashes had seven players advance to the state tournament, which is May 9 at Halls Ferry Park.

Elise and Anne Stewart Piazza came in second in girls’ No. 1 doubles, winning 6-0, 6-1 against Laurel Christian but falling to Park Place’s Maggie Savell and Maci Shelton 7-5, 3-6, 7-5 in the champonship match.

Meanwhile, Ryan Jarratt and Ethan Naron were second in No. 2 boys’ doubles. They beat Cathedral 6-2, 6-3 before falling to Laurel Christian 6-2, 6-0 in the finals.

Adrienne Eckstein was the runner-up in girls’ singles. She lost to Park Place’s Reagan Savell 6-4, 6-0 in the championship match, but still advanced to the state tournament.
St. Al. coach Rick Shields liked the performance his team put forth in the 80-degree weather at the Halls Ferry Park courts.

“I think overall the girls ended up winning by a point, and they did fairly well. The guys played well, but came up a little bit short,” Shields said. “Quite a few kids got the chance to go to state and play.”

Shields felt a few other players had a chance to advance to state as well, but was still pleased by the effort.

“We expected one or two more to go. Unfortunately, we lost earlier than we thought we would, but that’s the way it happens sometimes,” Shields said.

Shields felt that the losses his team suffered weren’t due to a lack of effort or an off day performance-wise, rather they just ran into some tough teams.

“The ones we lost generally lost to better teams,” Shields said. “So you can’t knock that. Sometimes you play somebody better and they outperform you, and that’s what I saw today for the most part.”

With their position now set in stone, the Flashes can look forward to their final match of the year at the state tournament, where the girls’ team won the overall trophy last year.
Chewning and Jarratt are also defending the No. 2 girls’ doubles championship. Elise Piazza won the No. 2 girls singles title last year, but will chase the No. 1 girls doubles crown this time with her sister.

“If we work hard the next few days we have a chance, but we have to play a little better than we did today,” Shields said. “We have to play better because the competition is going to be a little bit stiffer.”