Jaguars help district seed by topping rival Wildcats
Ella Weir spent an anxious summer wondering if her Blue Springs South tennis team would be able to compete amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Jaguars were able to play this fall and Tuesday night they claimed a 7-2 Suburban Big Eight Conference home win over longtime rival Blue Springs at Young Park.
“Today is so special, so sentimental, to win our last match against Blue Springs,” the senior No. 6 singles and No. 3 doubles player said after topping Grace Deaton 10-2 in singles and teaming with Abby Klassen to beat Kamryn Bush and Deaton 8-4 in No. 3 doubles action.
“I had so many friends who lost their senior season last spring, and I was afraid it might happen to us this fall. But we are playing an entire season and we start districts this weekend, so I couldn’t ask for anything more.’
South coach Jakob Estep was pleased with his team’s convincing victory over the Wildcats for two reasons.
“First, it’s always exciting to get a win against your big crosstown rival,” Estep said, “and second, this win will help us get the No. 4 seed in district, so it looks like we’ll play Blue Springs, the No. 5 seed, Monday in team district play.”
The Jaguars got a bit of cushion Tuesday as they won two of three doubles matches. Joining Klassen and Weir as doubles winners were No. 2 doubles team Sumerlyn Vorachek and Molly Wells, who got past Azure Radford and Molly Hacker 8-2.
Blue Springs’ No. 1 team of Allie Brown and Malina McGaw defeated Ashley Cooper and Natalie Nelson 8-1.
South’s Cooper lost the No. 1 singles match to Brown, and it was a Jaguar sweep the rest of the way as Vorachek won 10-3 over Radford at No. 2; Klassen topped Radford 10-3 at No. 3; Nelson won 10-6 at No. 4 over Hocker; Wells routed Bush 10-1 at No. 5; and Weir wrapped things up with her win at No. 6.
“This is a great day for our girls,” Estep added. “You like to see the smiling faces. They really worked hard this summer, not knowing if we would even have a season. And that hard work has paid off.”