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O’Neil qualifies for state tennis

Published: Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012 12:19 a.m. CDT • Updated: Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012 12:22 a.m. CDT
Princeton’s Jen O’Neil is all smiles Friday at the Ottawa Sectional after qualifying for the IHSA State tennis finals.

OTTAWA — The Princeton Tigress team had three entries seeded, but only one was able to qualify for the IHSA state tournament from Friday’s sectional at Ottawa, junior Jen O’Neil.

O’Neil in singles was the top seed. She had a bye in the first round then defeated Emma Dingbaum from Morris 6-0 6-0 and Rachel Dose from St. Bede 6-0 6-2 to earn the right to go to state. She will return to action for semifnal play Saturday and the right to play for the sectional championship.

Makenzey Wilson, the fourth seed in singles, drew a bye in the first round and then beat Kim Onsen from Coal City 6-1, 6-3. In the third round she fell to Erica Tabor from Ottawa 6-4 6-0. Wilson ended just her second season playing tennis with a 24-4 record.

The No. 1 doubles team of Stephanie Blessman and Mackenzie Schafer was the third seed. After a bye, they defeated Elyse Roberts and Mary Ellen Green from DeKalb 6-2 6-3. They rallied from a 2-5 deficit in the first set to Cavanaugh/Bradish from Ottawa and fought back to take the set 7-5. Ottawa came back to win the second set 7-5. PHS fought back from a 5-2 deficitin the third set, but lost 6-4.

The PHS No. 2 doubles of Kate Morrow andTaylor Behrends also had a bye in the first st round and then beat Faletti/Canzolino from St. Bede 6-0 6-2 in the third round. The Morrow and Behrends duo lost to Angell/Guenther from Ottawa 6-1, 6-3. Lind said the score did not reflect the level of play as the PHS duo took almost every game to deuce.

“It may not of have been the ending to the season we were hoping for but nothing can take away the fantastic season we had going undefeated 14-0,” Lind said. “Our fan support is like one big happy family. It didn’t matter which Princeton team was playing you could hear cheering and clapping all over.”

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