Steady play gives McCall District 14 A-AA singles crown

Steady play gives McCall District 14 A-AA singles crown
Steady play gives McCall District 14 A-AA singles crown | Katie McCall, District 14 A-AA tennis, Max Gearin, Mallory Robinson, Summer Hoke, Melissa McCartney, Greenfield, Tennessee, Lady Yellowjacket, Greenfield High School, Westview tennis

Winner — Greenfield sophomore Katie McCall returns a shot during her win over Union City’s Caroline Kirkland in the District 14 A-AA Tournament singles championship match Tuesday afternoon. McCall took the win and the district crown by a 6-2, 6-1 score
By Stephanie Sturgis
Sports Editor
After a runner-up finish in her freshman season, Greenfield Lady Yellowjacket tennis standout Katie McCall earned her first District 14 A-AA Tournament singles title on Tuesday.
Westview’s Max Gearin and Greenfield’s Mallory Robinson and doubles team of Summer Hoke and Melissa McCartney were eliminated during Monday’s semifinals.
McCall handled Union City’s Caroline Kirkland with a strong service game and steady play during the volleys. The Greenfield sophomore took the win by a 6-2, 6-1 score to improve her overall season record to 17-0.
“I thought she played well. Both players seemed a little nervous at first, but they got over their butterflies,” GHS tennis coach Bill McCall said. “Katie was hitting it pretty good. She got a good percentage of her first serves in and that helped. She was also consistent on her ground stokes.”
With the win, McCall will next take on the runner-up in the District 13 A-AA tourney when the Region 7 A-AA tournament begins on May 12 on the UT Martin campus.
To advance to the district final, McCall defeated the district’s fifth-seeded singles player and the top player from Milan, Kristen Garcia, during action Monday. The Lady Jacket took an easy 6-1, 6-0 victory.
Kirkland advanced to the final by topping Greenfield’s Robinson in the semis, 6-1, 7-5. Robinson pushed her opponent to the limit in the second set before falling. The Greenfield sophomore, who played at No. 2 all season, was undefeated until she ran into UC’s top singles player in the tourney. Robinson won two matches in the tourney and finished the season with a 15-1 record.
In the other singles semifinal involving a Weakley County player, Gearin, the tourney’s No. 2 seed in the boys bracket, ran into an unranked player performing at his peak. Milan’s Brandon Dowdy eliminated Gearin, 6-2, 4-6, 6-3 on Monday.
“Dowdy has been playing real well lately. It was cold and windy, and wind is not good for Max’s game. He plays a soft ball and really relies on placement,” Westview tennis coach Ed Baker said. “In the second set, Max got in a groove and won, but in the third set he got down and it just slipped away from him.”
In the doubles semifinal, third-seeded Hoke and McCartney took the first set, 6-2, against the No. 2 seeded team of Triplett and Gilliam from Union City. The UC pair bounced back to take the next two sets by identical 6-4 scores for the win.
With their berths in the district semifinals, McCall, Robinson, Gearon, Hoke and McCartney all earned the distinction of being All-District performers.

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