Sports

Netters hang tough

Oak Harbor senior Kelli Newton makes a return in Monday’s match. Newton lost 6-3, 6-1 in second singles to Snohomish’s Christine Jorgensen.    - Tim Adams/Whidbey News-Times
Oak Harbor senior Kelli Newton makes a return in Monday’s match. Newton lost 6-3, 6-1 in second singles to Snohomish’s Christine Jorgensen.
— image credit: Tim Adams/Whidbey News-Times

Hampered by injuries and inexperience, the Oak Harbor High School tennis team knew it had a full plate Monday afternoon hosting league-leading Snohomish.

The Panthers are undefeated and entered the WesCo North match with an 10-0 record. As a result, they had no problem handling the 1-8 Wildcats and rolled to a 7-0 victory.

Despite losing every match in straight sets, coach Horace Mells said the team remains positive.

“We are making progress, the only problem is we don’t have much of the season left,” he said.

Several weeks ago, the Wildcats lost first singles player Alyssa Merriman due to a back injury and changes had to be made in the rotation.

“Everybody had to move up and I had to change some of the doubles teams around,” Mells said.

Then sophomore Laurin Rico, who was playing third singles, hurt her knee and had to retire in back-to-back matches.

“She has had a bad knee for some time, it’s one of those nagging little injuries,” Mells said. “Today, I have her playing in a doubles match so she won’t have to work so hard. It will put less strain on her knee.”

Pairing with senior Marilu Morgan, the duo lost 6-2, 7-6 (5) to the Snohomish team of Mel Bjorethun and Katie Melnyk.

Fourth singles player Molly Deleon battled Sonja La Berge before losing 6-3, 6-4.

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