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Bayshore rivalry tennis: Eskymos pull out 5-3 victory over rival Braves

Austin Hemmingson | Daily Press Escanaba’s Jacey Moreau hits a return shot in a No. 1 singles match against Gladstone’s Alaina Trudeau during Monday’s match in Gladstone.

GLADSTONE — The weather was warm and there were smiles on both sides as bayshore rivals Escanaba and Gladstone came together for a girls tennis match Monday afternoon in Gladstone.

Both teams showed improvement from their first matches last week, but it was the Eskymos (2-1) dominating singles play and coming away with a 5-3 victory.

Jacey Moreau took down Alaina Trudeau 6-4, 7-6 (7-3) in a competitive match at No. 1; Sophia Derkos made quick work of Kate Matthews with a 6-2, 6-1 triumph at No. 2; and Ukiah Penegor got stronger as the match went on in a 6-4, 6-0 win over Rachel Krouth at No. 3.

“Tremendous meet all around today. We were able to win the meet, but it really could have gone either way,” Esky coach Chris Ogren said. “Jacey, Sophia, and Ukiah were all able to earn strong wins against quality opponents. Jacey especially showed resilience in her match to earn a tiebreak win in the second set.”

Despite the loss, Krouth felt she improved from the season-opener.

Austin Hemmingson | Daily Press Gladstone’s Emma Delaire hits a return shot in a No. 1 doubles match during Monday’s home match against Escanaba.

“My match was difficult, but I have improved from my last match,” she said. “I learned a lot from playing someone who is more experienced than I am.”

Addie Trombley picked up the Braves lone singles win with a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Amanda Beem.

“It is always fun competing against a neighboring rival, Escanaba,” Trombley said. “This was my first varsity win. This is going to be a fun season!”

The Braves (0-2) got a pair of quality wins at No. 1 and 2 doubles. Marnnea LaFave and Emma Delaire rallied back after dropping the first set for a 3-6, 6-2, 7-5 win over Erica Moore and Madi Mishica at No. 1, while Emma Wagner and Alesha Marenger outlasted Gracie Wickham and Abby Hill 6-4, 7-5 at No. 2.

“Today’s (match) against Escanaba went very well for Alesha and I,” Wagner said. “Our serves, returns, and communication was very on point today, which helped us a lot. Despite the heat, I think we played very well. (I’m) looking forward to our next (match) against Escanaba this upcoming Tuesday.”

The Eskymos took No. 3 and 4, however, as McKenna Bullen and Lilia Hughes won a close match with Montgomery Pepin and Maggie Buckle

y 6-4, 7-5 at No. 3, while Delaney McIntyre and Leslie Purcell got through a tiebreaker in the first set and then coasted in the second for a 7-6 (7-2), 6-1 triumph over Lahna Castor and Sophia Rosa at No. 4.

“Delaney McIntyre and Leslie Purcell had a great practice this afternoon, and I just knew it would carry over into the meet. They’ve only played two matches together, but I can already see them improving immensely,” Ogren said. “(No.) 1 and 2 doubles both lost heartbreakers that could have gone either way. Lilia Hughes hit the best volley of the day, and it was on the final point that clinched the match for (No.) 3 doubles.

“Overall, it was a great performance from both teams, and I can’t wait to do it again next Tuesday.”

Braves coach Ryan Barron saw plenty of improvement after his squad was swept by Marquette in its season-opener Thursday.

“I saw some great things out there today,” he said. “The girls’ confidence is boosting each and every day. The more confidence they get the more comfortable they will become, and in turn, become better tennis players.”

The Braves visit Menominee this morning at 11, while the Eskymos host Kingsford at 3.

Singles

No. 1 — Moreau, E, def. Trudeau, G, 6-4, 7-6 (7-3); No. 2 — Derkos, E, def. Matthews, G, 6-2, 6-1; No. 3 — Penegor, E, def. Krouth, G, 6-4, 6-0; No. 4 — Trombley, G, def. Beem, E, 6-3, 6-1.

Doubles

No. 1 — LaFave-Delaire, G, def. Moore-Mishica, E, 3-6, 6-2, 7-5; No. 2 — Wagner-Marenger, G, def. Wickham-Hill, E, 6-4, 7-5; No. 3 — Bullen-Hughes, E, def. Pepin-Buckley, G, 6-4, 7-5; No. 4 — McIntyre-Purcell, E, def. Castor-Rosa, G, 7-6 (7-2), 6-1.

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