Mount Airy’s girls tennis team couldn’t have enjoyed its 2016 season much more than it did. The Lady Bears posted a 26-2 season that didn’t even until the team was in the state championship match, where it lost a closely contested match to Raleigh Charter.
However, that was about the only thing the Lady Bears didn’t win. Mount Airy won the Northwest 1A Conference championship, the West Regional title, and was the best team in Surry County, with a perfect 9-0 mark against other teams from the county during the course of the season. The only match the Lady Bears lost, other than to Raleigh Charter, was to 4A Reagan, and they avenged that.
Following the season, the conference named its All-Conference team, and as one might imagine, it was filled with Mount Airy players—no mean feat in a loop where two other schools, East Surry and Bishop McGuinness, were ranked in the state top 10 throughout the season.
Five of the Lady Bears’ six singles players were all-conference selections, and the other one was honorable mention. In addition, a freshman reserve was chosen as an honorable mention selection.
Mount Airy’s top two singles players, Bailey Jackson and Elizabeth Marion, both were tabbed for the all-conference team for the third time in their careers. The two swapped the top spots in the order during the season, with Jackson, a senior, going 3-1 as the No. 1 player and posting the same mark at No. 2. Marion was 4-4 overall, going 3-1 in the second slot. As a doubles team, the duo went 4-2. Marion, a junior, will return next year and try to make it a perfect 4-for-4 in all-conference honors.
Junior Maya Hicks, who posted a 6-2 mark as the No. 4 singles player, earned her second all-conference nod. Hicks won all six of her conference doubles matches, five of them at No. 3 doubles with senior Lisa Omuro.
Logan King, a senior, received her first all-conference honor after going 6-2 as the team’s No. 3 singles player throughout the year. She was 1-0 at No. 1 doubles and 4-2 in her usual No. 2 slot with fellow senior Elizabeth Bray.
Omuro, who broke into the starting lineup for the first time in her senior season, posted a 6-2 mark at No. 5 singles, the seed she played throughout the season. Her season highlight may have come in the playoffs, when the Lady Bears desperately needed her to rally in her singles match against Bishop McGuinness, and she won a match tiebreaker 14-12 after saving several match points. However, she did more than enough in the regular season to earn the honor, going 6-0 in doubles, 1-0 at No. 2 and 5-0 as Hicks’ partner at No. 3.
Bray, Mount Airy’s No. 6 singles player, earned honorable mention for her unbeaten (7-0) singles season and 5-2 doubles mark. She actually played one match at No. 1 doubles and won it, and went 4-2 as King’s partner at No. 2. Joining her as honorable mention all-conference was freshman Meredith Marion, who was 1-0 at No. 6 singles and 1-1 at No. 3 doubles during league play.