Trinity tops Southwestern 3-2 at home

Trinity Lutheran swept the singles matches to edge Southwestern (Shelby) 3-2 at home.

The match came down to Trinity’s Drew Hubbard and Southwestern’s Ella Rice. Hubbard won the first set 6-4, lost the second set in a tie-breaker 6-7 (7-5) and came out strong in the third set for a 6-1 win.

Cougars coach Julie Lemming gave Hubbard credit for battling until the end.

“Drew really had to dig deep, especially because of a hamstring injury that just manifested today. One of her strengths is her mental game.”

The match lasted two and a half hours. “She preserved and it paid off. I’m very proud of her,” Lemming said.

Sarah Lemming at No. 1 singles defeated Lauryn Blandell 6-0, 6-3, and Trinity’s Gabby Bleier defeated McKenzie 6-2, 6-1 at No. 3 singles.

Coach Lemming said the hard practices paid off for her team. “We’ve been working quite a bit this week.”

Bleier is a junior and this is her first win as she lost earlier in the week at Austin.

“It feels good to get my first win,” she said. “I like singles. I’ve never tried doubles, but prefer singles.”

A strong cross-wind blew throughout the match, and Bleier said she had to adjust constantly. “I just moved over to whatever side it wasn’t blowing, and then I just took my time. I was trying to keep the ball low. For the most part I felt like I had pretty good ground strokes.

“I need to learn to get to the middle of the court faster and to just place the ball in spots where it’s hard for my opponent to get to. I want to tire out my opponents.”

A light rain fell for 12-15 minutes when most of the matches were in their second sets.

Bleier said, “There was one time when I almost slipped. It was really slippery, but other than that it wasn’t too bad.”

Following the showers, the sun came out, the wind dried the courts and the girls continued their play.

At No. 1 doubles, Kyla Robertson and Brooke Schneider topped Trinity’s Ella Christopher and Kiley Zabel 7-5, 6-0, and Spartans Faith Kelley and McKinley Correll topped Carson Bowling and Natalee Martinez 6-1, 6-0 at No. 2 doubles.

Coach Lemming said, “We have quite a bit of experience in our doubles teams. We’re also pretty proud of them. They’re jiving. They’re getting there.

“Well take that balance,” she said as her team evened its record at 1-1. “We are going to have quite a few close matches.

“One of our toughest opponents is coming Monday, Southwestern (Hanover). We always say going into that match it’s going to be a challenging opponent, but they’re going to make us better.”