SBAAC, ECC hold tennis tournaments

By Garth Shanklin - Sports Editor
New Richmond’s Sophia Dragoo, Goshen’s Sami Huhn and Batavia’s Elise Neal compete at the SBAAC Tournament on Friday, September 28, 2018. For more photos from both tournaments, pick up a copy of the October 4 edition of The Clermont Sun. -

All eight Clermont County schools that sponsor girls tennis sent teams to their respective conference tournaments last week, with a few bringing back some hardware.

The Southern Buckeye Athletic and Academic Conference tournament was held at Wilmington High School, starting with the American Division on Thursday, September 27.

Goshen’s Caroline Clifton dropped a 6-4, 6-0 match in first singles to Wilmington freshman Claire Burns, dropping the senior to the consolation match against New Richmond sophomore Sophia Dragoo. Clifton defeated Dragoo 6-1, 7-6 to place third.

Dragoo had beaten Batavia’s Megan Wallace in the first round. Wallace then defeated Western Brown’s Madison Kirk 8-4 in the fifth-place match.

In second singles play, Goshen’s Sami Huhn defeated New Richmond’s Julie Harrison 6-2, 6-1 to advance to the finals against Clinton-Massie’s Nina Lazic. Huhn defeated Lazic in three sets, dropping the first 7-6 but winning the next two 6-1, 7-5 to earn the title.

Harrison fell to Wilmington’s Allie Kees 6-3, 6-1 in the third-place match. Batavia’s Elise Neal defeated Western Brown’s Brooklyn Miller 8-0 to place fifth.

Another Lady Warrior won the title in third singles play. Goshen’s Kelsey Salmons defeated Wilmington’s Nichols 6-2, 6-1 to advance to the title match against Clinton-Massie’s Raelee Schulz. Salmons won the contest 6-1, 6-1.

New Richmond’s Karyn Manning fell to Nichols 6-1, 6-0 in the third-place match. Batavia’s Helan Shelton defeated Western Brown’s Marion 8-2 in the fifth-place match.

In the first double’s bracket, Goshen’s Mary Price and Morgan Horr fell to Clinton-Massie’s Liza Duncan and Kari Cragwall 6-2, 6-1 in the semifinals. New Richmond’s Melissa Ewald and Madaleine Marrs dropped their opening match to Western Brown’s Savannah Rhoades and Brooklyn O’Hara 6-2, 6-3.

Price and Horr fell to Rhoades and O’Hara 6-2, 3-6, 6-2 and finished fourth. Ewald and Marrs defeated Batavia’s Mia Wright and Kennedy Williams 8-3 to place fifth.

Finally, Goshen’s Dinah Middick and Shayna Velagic advanced over New Richmond’s Brooke Robbins and Emma Kussman in second doubles play. The Goshen duo finished second, falling to Wilmington’s Kristina Walt and Zane Bekheet.

Robbins and Kussman then dropped a 6-3, 6-1 match to Clinton-Massie’s Jenn Callewaert and Lindsey Amberger. Batavia’s Rash and Holly Smith finished fifth, defeating Western Brown’s Barber and Jackson 8-2.

Wilmington won the team title with 39 points. Goshen placed second with 36, followed by Clinton-Massie’s 34. New Richmond tallied 24 points for fourth place, with Batavia in fifth, one point ahead of Western Brown.

One day later, the National Division teams took to the court in Wilmington.

Clermont Northeastern’s Leah Decatur defeated Felicity’s Raelynn Morales 6-2, 6-0 to advance to the championship in first singles play. Decatur won the title, defeating East Clinton’s Hailey Harrell 6-0, 6-2.

Morales fell to Blanchester’s Kayla Allen 6-4, 6-1 to place fourth. Bethel-Tate’s Tori Burkitt finished fifth.

In second singles play, Bethel-Tate’s Grace White defeated Felicity’s Bailey Lowe 3-6, 6-2, 6-1 to advance to the title match. She then defeated Clermont Northeastern’s Kenady Brown 6-1, 6-1 to win the title. Lowe fell to East Clinton’s Paige Harrell 5-7, 6-1 (10-8) to place fourth.

CNE’s Abbey Baker won the title in the third singles bracket. Baker defeated Blanchester’s Lydia Falgner 6-1, 6-4 to win the crown. Felicity’s Piper Blake placed third, earning a 6-4, 6-2 win over East Clinton’s Erin Kratzer.

In doubles play, Felicity’s Guadalupe Rodriguez and Leah Cooper finished second, falling in the championship match to Blanchester’s Elicia Patton and Annie Trovillo 6-4, 6-0. Bethel-Tate’s Taylor Bee and Abbie Wheeler finished fourth, dropping their semifinal match to the duo from Felicity before falling to East Clinton’s Carlie Ellis and Sarah Ross.

CNE’s Destiny Sheanshang and Savannah Grenzer finished fifth.

In second doubles, another pair of Lady Rockets won the title. CNE’s Raven Benshoof and Alyssa Ferguson won the title with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Blanchester’s Maddy Coyle and Taylor Bradley.

Winners in three of the five brackets gave the Lady Rockets the team title with 38 points. Blanchester finished second with 33 points. The Lady Wildcats had won at least a share of seven straight league titles entering this season.

East Clinton and Felicity tied for third with 29 points. Bethel-Tate placed fifth with 22.

The Eastern Cincinnati Conference tournament was held at the Lunken Tennis Courts on Friday, September 28. When the results were tallied, Turpin won the team title with 45 points. Milford placed sixth with 18 points. West Clermont tallied 10 points and finished seventh.

Milford’s Elise Ostrander finished fourth in first singles play. West Clermont’s Taylor Hogsed placed seventh.

In second singles play, West Clermont’s Abigal Marsh finished in seventh place. Milford’s Emme Thomas placed sixth.

Jackie Hooper placed fifth for Milford in third singles, two spots ahead of West Clermont’s Emily Glassburn.

Milford’s doubles teams of Samantha Miller and Emma Neal along with Olivia Bailey and Ashley Stamper both placed sixth in their respective brackets. West Clermont’s two doubles teams, Hailey Thalheimer and Lizzie Cowles along with Savannah Kendle and Jessica Hansel, both placed seventh.

Sectional tournament play began earlier this week for most Clermont County Athletes. Milford will start play at the Lindner Family Tennis Center on Thursday, October 4 at 8:30 a.m. All other locations and divisions began play earlier in the week, but those results were not available before press time.

New Richmond’s Sophia Dragoo, Goshen’s Sami Huhn and Batavia’s Elise Neal compete at the SBAAC Tournament on Friday, September 28, 2018. For more photos from both tournaments, pick up a copy of the October 4 edition of The Clermont Sun.
https://www.clermontsun.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/web1_Tennis.jpgNew Richmond’s Sophia Dragoo, Goshen’s Sami Huhn and Batavia’s Elise Neal compete at the SBAAC Tournament on Friday, September 28, 2018. For more photos from both tournaments, pick up a copy of the October 4 edition of The Clermont Sun.

By Garth Shanklin

Sports Editor