Tennis suffers first loss

Published 9:43 am Thursday, October 5, 2017

Since 2015, Davie’s tennis team has not had a whole lot of experience at losing. That didn’t make it less painful when visiting Reynolds knocked off Davie 5-4 on Sept. 26.

It was a teeth-gnashing verdict. The War Eagles (9-1 overall, 5-1 Central Piedmont Conference) could have all but wrapped up the outright championship in the regular season for the second year in a row. But the roles were reversed from the first meeting on Sept. 20, when Davie won 5-4. The Demons (10-4, 6-1) jumped into a first-place tie and snapped Davie’s 29-match winning streak in the regular season.

After the teams split six matches in singles, Davie’s losses at Nos. 2-3 doubles left a bad taste in its mouth.

“We played fantastically and fought until the bitter end,” coach Collin Ferebee said after Davie’s first regular-season defeat since a 5-4 decision at Reynolds in 2015. “The problem was, (Reynolds coach Johnny Highsmith) played his No. 1 at No. 2 doubles and his No. 2 at No. 3 doubles, so we didn’t have much of a shot because he didn’t play the doubles in the order that we expected and the way he’s played them all season. It’s kind of like putting your starting quarterback on JV.”

No. 1 Laura Becker (6-0, 6-0) and No. 4 Aubree Privat (6-3, 6-0) rolled to wins. No. 3 Amanda Ngo (6-2, 7-6) faced turbulence in the second set but prevailed, winning the second-set tiebreaker 7-5. But at No. 2, Sierra Foster absorbed her first loss of the season by scores of 6-3, 6-3. In the other matchup with Reynolds’ Elizabeth Youseff, Foster pulled a win out of the ashes 4-6, 7-6 (10-4).

There were two gut-wrenching losses in singles. No. 5 Moriah Lane and No. 6 Grace Nixon both claimed the first set before losing their matches. Lane’s scores were 6-3, 6-7 (8-10). Nixon’s were 6-4, 2-6 (6-10).

“They could have gone either way,” Ferebee said. “It breaks your way some days and doesn’t break your way others.”

Davie had a 4-3 lead when Becker/Ngo breezed 8-0 at No. 1 doubles. They overwhelmed Reynolds’ third and fourth seeds.

“Amanda and Laura played well,” Ferebee said. “They should have because they were playing their three and four.”

But Reynolds grabbed the other two doubles. Foster/Privat lost 8-4 against No. 1 Jamie Christie and No. 6 Emelie Patti. Lane/Nixon lost by the same margin against No. 2 Youseff and Caitlin Casey, who did not play singles.

Oh, and since you asked: It was not the same doubles lineup that Highsmith employed in the first meeting, although he did make legal adjustments. The sky is not falling. Davie could win out and finish with at least a share of first in back-to-back years for the first time since 1976-77.

“They fought and they did not quit,” Ferebee said of the Nos. 2-3 doubles teams. “They should have both lost pretty handily, and they were in it until the end. They were upset that they lost, but I was like: ‘Look, you played people you weren’t supposed to play and you fought them and didn’t give up. That’s all I can ask of you.’ On court two, I didn’t expect (Foster and Privat) to play their No. 1 player. On court three, I didn’t expect (Lane and Nixon) to play their No. 2 player.”


One day later, the War Eagles had a get-well match at Glenn. They obliterated the winless Bobcats 9-0.

The winners in singles were Becker (6-0, 6-0), Foster (6-0, 6-0), Ngo (6-0, 6-1), Privat (6-0, 6-0), Lane (6-0, 6-0) and Nixon (6-1, 6-0). Privat/Emery Rosenbaum (8-3), Sydney Smith/Ashley Butero (8-1) and Eliza Smith/Laura Newsom (8-4) finished off the shutout in doubles. Glenn tumbled to 0-15, 0-8.


Reagan is no slouch. But visiting Reagan was no match for Davie’s A-game on Sept. 28.

“They wanted to make sure we keep going in the right direction,” Ferebee said after the 7-2 wipeout.

Becker (6-1, 6-0), Foster (6-0, 6-0), Ngo (6-1, 6-1), Privat (6-1, 6-1), Lane (6-4, 7-5) and Nixon (6-4, 6-4) swept singles as Davie (11-1, 7-1) defeated the third-place Raiders (8-3, 5-3) for the seventh straight time.

“Moriah started strong,” Ferebee said. “She was a little shaky at one point in the second set, and then she got back on track. She was behind a fair amount of the second set.

“Grace had a slow start in the first set, but then took care of business. She was winning the whole time, but they were both playing well. Neither of them were missing. Grace’s match took longer than it took for Laura and Amanda to play singles and doubles.”

Becker/Ngo had Davie’s doubles win, 8-1.

Notes: Becker, Ngo and Privat are all 12-0 in singles. … Becker and Ngo are 7-0 at No. 1 doubles. … Before the Reynolds loss, Davie was 38-4 since 2015.