The girls tennis season got underway during the last week of February. Turnout was a bit down compared to past years, which was understandable considering it was still snowing and did not seem like tennis weather at all. The first weeks of practice were extremely cold, wet, windy and even snowy at times. It was a difficult way to start, but the team responded extremely well, practicing outdoors whenever possible and using the newly repaired bubble several times when absolutely necessary. Thanks again to everyone who helped get the bubble up and running over its difficult first year.
The 2019 girls team had a lot of talented players to replace and not a lot of time to prepare for the first matches. Their first home match against Fife was rained out and rescheduled for April 22. So their first match was a challenging away match against South Kitsap. South Kitsap is a large 4A school with lots of courts, lots of players and normally presents a pretty even matchup for the Pirates. This proved to be the case again. South Kitsap had twice the number of players, and all matches were as close as could be, with the Pirates pulling off an exciting 3-2 win.
Mira Zike and Aislin Pinckney got the Pirates off to a good start with a 6-2, 6-4 win at number 3 doubles. Lia Crawford and Sarah Cooper then dropped a hard fought match at number 2 doubles, losing in a tight third set tiebreaker, 6-4. 4-6. 8- 10. Vashon’s number 1 doubles team, Lauren Henley and Ashley McArthur, then put the team ahead again with a nice comeback win, 4-6, 6-4, 10-8. At number 2 singles, Maggie Battisti played her first match extremely well, but lost 0-6, 2-6 in a match much closer than the score indicates . As a result, the team score was tied at 2-2 and came down to number 1 singles, which couldn’t have been much closer. The Pirates number one singles player, Pailey Lieske, dropped the first set, but with some determined play came back to win two consecutive tie breakers, taking the match 2-6, 7-6, 11-9. The Pirates lone JV players Sequoia Gregorich and Bea Quarta played several matches and ended up splitting them. It was a great team effort and earned the Pirates a win in their first match.
The Pirates should have a few more players ready for this weeks matches, which will be challenging. On Monday, after press time, the Pirates traveled to Granite Falls for what is usually a difficult away match and then returned to play a strong Kings team at home.
— Pat Mulvihill is the tennis coach.