The Wakefield girls tennis team got off to a strong start thanks to No. 1 singles player Susanne Boyden and held on for the 5-4 win over Cap-8 rival Wake Forest.
The two-time reigning 4A singles champion won 6-0, 6-0 to give the Wolverines (2-1, 2-0) a quick point. Wakefield led 4-2 after singles with wins from Boyden, Caroline Stallings, Melanie Tojong and Maddy Munsey.
The Wolverines needed just one win in the trio of doubles matches, and Boyden and Lilan Ivey came through with the 8-1 win on the top court. Wake Forest (0-2, 0-2) made the match close with 8-4 wins from the No. 2 pair, Bree McClung and Trinity Burks, and No. 3 duo, Rachel Davis and Erin Spreen.
They said it
“She’s totally amazing, right?” said Wakefield coach Stacy Morgan about Boyden. “She always brings her best. That’s what you want a player to bring every game. She brings it every time she plays.”
Three who mattered
Susanne Boyden, Wakefield: Although Boyden cruised to an easy win in singles and doubles, there were still parts of her game that she wants to work on.
“My serve was probably what I was challenged with the most,” Boyden said. “I was missing my first serve more than I usually do.”
Caroline Stallings, Wakefield: Stallings won 6-3, 6-0 over Kinsey Wess in a match that took more patience and effort than the score might indicate. Stallings did well to consistently keep the ball in play and put Wess in tough positions to return.
Bree McClung, Wake Forest: McClung defeated Ivey 6-0, 6-4 in the longest singles match of the game. McClung weathered long rallies and her own unforced errors to take the match. She continued her strong play in her doubles win.
“(Wake Forest) is a program that’s very young and growing,” said substitute Cougars coach Jeremiah Mattingly. “To see the three or four players being able to compete and win two out of six singles matches against a perennial power like Wakefield is very uplifting for our girls.”
Many times during the match, Wakefield hit with good pace, but the Cougars were often out of position.
“I’d like to see them move their feet a lot more,” Mattingly said. “Just being more active when their opponent is striking the ball, so they can get to balls quicker. Besides that, their technique is getting better.”
By the numbers
2: Boyden lost just two points in a dominant second set against Kyrsten Le. Boyden showed why she’s one of the top players in the state with a strong forehand, pinpoint accuracy and active feet. Boyden only lost nine points total in her 6-0, 6-0 victory.
16: McClung’s win at No. 2 singles for Wake Forest was the last singles match to finish, and it took a 16-hit rally for McClung to seal the victory. Multiple times during her match with Ivey, rallies would extend past 15 and 20 hits, but McClung’s patience won out in the end.
4, 5: Morgan praised the play of two new girls to the lineup, Melanie Tojong at No. 4 singles and Maddy Munsey at No. 5. Tojong won her match 6-2, 6-0, and Munsey won 6-4, 6-1.
“(Munsey’s) been playing quite a while, but she’s new to the team and she’s done very well today,” Morgan said. “We have some really good players coming on.”