The match between Millbrook and visiting Enloe came down to No. 1 doubles, between a pair of freshmen and a freshman-sophomore team.
The freshman duo of Brianna Taranto and Shea Cirillo pulled out the 8-6 win to give the Wildcats a 5-4 victory Tuesday, but the future is bright for both Cap-8 teams.
Millbrook (4-3, 4-3 Cap-8) got the victory by winning the final two doubles matches contested.
Enloe (4-5, 2-5) won at No. 2 doubles (Soyhoen Kim and Anna Li) 8-6 to take a 4-3 lead in the match, but the Wildcats’ No. 3 doubles team of Katie LeFevre and Hannah Shifman pulled out a 9-8 (7-2 tiebreak) win moments before Taranto and Cirillo secured their comeback win.
“It was very important because our record was 3-3, and I told the girls, ‘We need this,’ ” Millbrook coach Amanda Dauphinais said. “I wanted to get through the first half of the season with a winning record. I love that it was close. It makes for a stressful but very fun night.”
Enloe coach Steve Spivey knows a break or two could’ve changed the entire match.
“We really competed well, and the match could’ve gone either way,” Spivey said. “A couple singles matches could’ve swung our way to make it 4-2 us, which would’ve made a big difference. I’m proud of the girls.”
Taranto and Cirillo trailed Enloe’s Nija Price and Catherine Battle 4-1 in the crucial doubles match but turned things around to secure the win as the sun began to set.
Three who mattered
Cirillo: The Millbrook freshman was the last player standing into two matches. Her No. 2 singles battle with Battle was the final singles match, which Cirillo won 6-4, 4-6, 1-0 (10-8). “I just said to myself what I always do: ‘It’s not over until the last point,’” Cirillo said. “I just told myself that and to hang in there. I just wanted to keep on saying, ‘The next point, the next point. Don’t give up.’”
Li: The Enloe junior won her match at No. 4 singles in a tiebreak 3-6, 6-2, 1-0 (10-4), and she then teamed with Kim to win at No. 2 doubles.
Shifman: The Millbrook senior battled her way to two wins: No 6 singles over Savarni Sanka 6-0, 7-5 and the key No. 3 doubles win with LeFevre. “I was really impressed with Hannah,” Dauphinais said.
By the numbers
3: Number of underclassmen in the top six for Millbrook, led by the two freshmen. “I don’t think it matters so much,” Dauphinais said. “They have rightfully claimed their positions as one and two. It’s exciting, because then we can build the program for three more years after this. Obviously, it’s different, but they’ve proven themselves.”
3: Number of underclassmen in the top six for Enloe (Price and Eileen Yang are sophomores, and Battle is a freshman). Kim is the lone senior in the lineup. “We’re young,” Spivey said. “We’re going to be tough in the next couple of years. The future looks good for us.”
Taranto dispatched Price at No 1 singles 6-4. 6-1 and then teamed with Cirillo to win at No. 1 doubles.
They said it
“When I was at Broughton, if we lost a match – one match – in a year, it was bad and they were about to fire me,” Spivey said of his 28-year tenure at Broughton. “We didn’t lose much.”