Lady Bears give Central first loss of season

Jeff Linville Staff Reporter

October 1, 2013

DOBSON —Surry Central suffered its first tennis loss of the season as Mount Airy won 6-2.

The Lady Eagles went into Monday’s match 10-0, but the Lady Bears are the top-ranked 1A team in the state, according to the coaches’ poll at Mytennisnetwork.

The Bears won five of six singles matches despite missing two starters. Top seed Davi Barbour has a sinus infection, and fourth seed Carley VanHoy was resting an injury from last week.

Haley Thomas took Barbour’s spot at the top and went to a third-set tiebreaker with the Eagles’ Marlee Wilmoth.

Thomas won the first set 6-3, but Wilmoth came back to tie the second set 6-6, then won the tiebreaker at 7-5. In the third-set tiebreaker, Wilmoth came out on top 10-2.

At the second spot, the Bears’ Bree Hughes won 6-0, 6-1 over Kennedy Dockery.

The Bears’ Jai Daniels swept Sommer Chilton on Court Three 6-0, 6-0.

Mount Airy’s Bailey Jackson beat Mikayla Cox 6-3, 6-2.

“As bad as those singles scores sounded, my girls hit the ball really well,” said Central Coach Dennis Miller. The matches on courts five and six were very close, so the Eagles nearly pulled out a 3-3 tie.

At the fifth spot, the Bears’ Abby Hagwood won the first set 6-3, but Cassie Hoge didn’t give up and forced a second-set tiebreaker. Hagwood won that 7-5.

On Court Six, Central’s Mallory Wilmoth and Mount Airy’s Cheyenne Rhodes each won a set by a 6-2 score. In the third set, Rhodes won 10-3.

That clinched the match before doubles play began, so the coaches decided to rest their top doubles team after Thomas and Marlee Wilmoth had such a long match.

Central’s Dockery and Cox beat Hughes and Daniels 9-7. Mount Airy’s Hagwood and Rhodes won 8-2 over Hoge and Mallory Wilmoth.

Even in the matches that look lopsided, there were some long rallies up and down the courts, noted Miller.

“When they are making 7- or 12-shot rallies, they are playing,” he said. They went down fighting, and that’s what matters. He liked the ball striking of his team, noting that they made some good shots.

However, Mount Airy hustled well and got to a lot of balls.

Miller said he has been on his team to never give up on a point. He was proud to see his squad match Mount Airy’s hustle, even if the Bears did win.

The Eagles travel to South Stokes today, while the Bears next travel to North Stokes on Thursday.