By Caryn Grant
RALEIGH Broughton junior Maggie Kane found herself down 5-3 in the first set of the N.C. High School Athletic Association 4A Mideast regionals championship round Saturday at Millbrook Exchange Tennis Center.
She had played and beaten her opponent, Wakefield freshman Susanne Boyden, twice during the regular season, and with her undefeated record on the line, Kane knew she had to make a change.
“I didn’t get a very good start, and then I kind of felt a momentum shift when I won that game and it was 5-4,” Kane said. “From then on I got my confidence back and just kind of ran with it.”
Kane wouldn’t drop another game, beating Boyden 7-5, 6-0.
Boyden came into the championship match after handing Tri-9 champion Jamie Rogers of Cary High her second loss of the year.
Kane remains unbeaten as she enters the state finals round, but isn’t taking anything for granted.
“I know that there are a lot of great girls there, so I’m just going to try to take it one match at a time,” she said.
The top four players in singles and the top four doubles teams will advance to next week’s NCHSAA 4A finals.
Rogers finished third and Panther Creek’s Megan Smith finished fourth.
Smith’s Catamounts teammates freshmen Sammi Smith and Jordan Strickland took the regional title in doubles play, winning 6-3, 6-1 over Millbrook’s Lauren McCorquodale and Savannah Taranto.
”We’re excited,” Strickland said. “We felt very confident coming in here.”
The duo said they’re used to playing against older competition, but didn’t know what to expect from some of the regional players they hadn’t faced before. After winning regionals without dropping a set, they are excited to see the competition they’ll face in the next round.
In the match for third place, Broughton’s doubles teams met again after facing each other in the Cap Eight tournament finals.
Adrienne Overcash and Kara Summerford defeated Kelsey Boole and Olivia King, 6-0, 4-6, 6-4.
Broughton coach Laura Davidson said that although she doesn’t like her players to have to compete against each other, the match had to be played to determine seeding.
“When we get to states, they’ll be on different sides of the bracket,” Davidson said.
Millbrook Exchange Park will also host the 4A state tournament, which takes place next Friday and Saturday.