Wildcats reign in the rain

"Even Mother Nature couldn't postpone the inevitable: A tennis title for Oak Harbor.Rain brought a halt to the 4-A Western Conference title match between the Wildcats and Edmonds-Woodway on Monday. Then after getting rained out Tuesday, play resumed Wednesday and the Wildcats prevailed 4-3.No. 2 singles Theresa Black was the difference. Black, bouncing back from the long delay, defeated Paula Coutinho 7-6, 6-3 to give the Wildcats their victory. It was Oak Harbor's first Wesco title since 1991.It's been a long time in coming, Oak Harbor coach Horace Mells said.Oak Harbor led 3-1 when competition was stopped by rain on Monday. No. 1 singles Stacie Pate, No. 4 singles Elizabeth Galbraith, No. 1 doubles Jenna Wehrell and Nicole Nolte, and No. 2 doubles Maggie Manucal and Kelly Linder had finished their matches before the rain fell. Pate and the two doubles teams both won their matches. Black and Coutinho meanwhile were engaged in a tremendous battle. They were tied 6-6 in the first set when play was stopped. After a rainout, coaches are always concerned about how players will recover from a long delay. Mells got his answer from Black very quickly Wednesday.Black finished off the first set, and came back strong to take the second one as well.She was the pivotal player for us, Mells said, She played an excellent match. I really think Theresa wanted the match more than her opponent.No. 3 singles Charissa Brecht, and No. 3 doubles Natasha Kroh and Nicole McCumber waged tough battles, too. Brecht came up short, falling to Alexandra Zaytseva 6-4, 7-6. Kroh and McCumber dropped a marathon match to Maria Lim and Dorothy Kim 7-6, 7-5.Oak Harbor, which won the Northern Division title earlier, finished regular season play with a 14-1 record.Thursday, the Wildcats moved indoors as they played in the 4-A Northwest District singles tournament at Edmonds' Harbor Square Athletic Club. Pate, seeded No. 1, defeated Cascade's Katie Gabba 6-2, 6-2 in the first round.Black, seeded 10th, defeated Kamiak's Tanya Ramfar 6-4, 6-1. Brecht lost to Amy Zavaglia of Edmonds-Woodway 1-6, 6-2, 6-2.In second-round action today, Pate plays Sara Allen of Edmonds-Woodway at 12:30 p.m., and Black meets Lacey Bruce of Shorewood at 2 p.m.4-A WESTERN CONFERENCEChampionship matchOAK HARBOR 4, EDMONDS-WOODWAY 3Singles: Stacie Pate (OH) d. Amy Zavaglia 6-2, 6-0; Theresa Black (OH) d. Paula Coutinho 7-6, 6-3; Alexandra Zaytseva (EW) d. Charissa Brecht 6-4, 7-6; Sara Allen (EW) d. Elizabeth Galbraith 6-0, 6-3.Doubles: Jenna Wehrell-Nicole Nolte (OH) d. Deonna Hughes-Viktoriya Zaytseva 6-1, 6-2; Maggie Manucal-Kelly Linder (OH) d. Paula Isla-Eunice Song 6-0, 6-1; Maria Lim-Dorothy Kim (EW) d. Natasha Kroh-Nicole McCumber 7-6, 7-5.4-A NW DISTRICT SINGLESAt Edmonds' Harbor SquareThursday's matchesFirst round: Stacie Pate (OH) d. Katie Gappa (Cascade) 6-2, 6-2; Theresa Black (OH) d. Tanya Ramfar (Kamiak) 6-4, 6-1; Amy Zavaglia (Ed-Wood) d. Charissa Brecht (OH) 1-6, 6-2, 6-2; Sara Allen (Ed-Wood) d. Abaro (Mariner) 6-1, 6-0; Lacey Bruce (Shorewood) d. Shannon Ba-Aye (Sehome) 6-1, 6-1; Morgan Smith (Sehome) d. Gorney (Shorecrest) 6-1, 6-3.Today's matchesPate vs. Allen, 12:30 p.m.; Black vs. Bruce, 2 pm."

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