DOBSON — Surry Central came up a few points short in some singles matches, then fell to Bandys 5-4 in the second round of the state 2A dual-team tennis playoffs.
The Lady Eagles knew coming in that they didn’t have much of a chance at two matches.
Bandys’ top seed, Cassidy Shell, won the 2A West regional tournament over the weekend and is the top seed for the state championship this weekend.
“She was phenomenal,” Coach Dennis Miller said of Shell’s performance Tuesday. Shell swept Marlee Wilmoth 6-0, 6-0 and looks like the favorite to win the state title, Miller said.
Shell and doubles partner Halie Moore also won 10-2 over Wilmoth and Sommer Chilton.
That meant that the Eagles would have to win five of the other seven matches to advance. They took four and came close in the other three.
After Shell’s quick win in singles, the Eagles answered with two wins down on the lower courts.
Sixth seed Mallory Wilmoth raced through her match with Taylor Lowrey 6-4, 6-1. Then fifth seed Cassie Hoge beat Alexis Travis 6-1, 6-3.
That gave the Eagles a 2-1 team lead.
Second seed Kennedy Dockery lost the first set 4-6 and was down 4-5 in the second set before forcing a tiebreaker at 6-6. She won the tiebreaker 7-4 to force a third set.
Kennedy was down 5-0 and facing defeat, but she showed tremendous mental toughness to win five straight games and tie the set 5-5, said Miller. Unfortunately, Alexis Wagner took the last two games for the win.
Kennedy was hitting some awesome ground strokes, but Wagner was really good at chasing them down and keeping points alive, the coach said.
Sommer Chilton lost the first set 4-6 and was down 4-5 in the second set. She hit some good shots, but Moore pulled out the game for the win.
On Court Four, Mikayla Cox won the first set 6-4 over Rachel Hendershot. She was having issues with her contacts and dropped the second set 4-6.
Mikayla got frustrated in the third set and didn’t win a game, falling 6-0, Miller said.
Down 4-2 after singles, the Eagles needed all three doubles matches.
Hoge and Olivia Fowler beat Travis/Lowrey 10-3 to make it 4-3.
However, Shell and Moore won their doubles match to clinch the win.
The second doubles match was halted at 8-2 with Dockery and Cox well in control against Wagner/Hendershot.
It was amazing that they didn’t have any problem with the same girls that had just beat them in singles, said Miller.
Bandys advances to face Lake Norman Charter with defending champion Salisbury lurking in the next round.
Marlee Wilmoth will take part in the 16-player state tournament this weekend in Cary. If she survives two rounds on Friday, Wilmoth would be back on Saturday to finish the event. North Surry’s Sarah Glasco also will be in the tournament.