Cathedral barely loses District title to St. Andrews

Published 12:00 am Friday, April 20, 2001

After the final match of Thursday’s 2001 Division 6-2A Tennis Tournament at the Duncan Park tennis courts was completed, Cathedral and St. Andrews each won two matches.

The district title then had to go to the number of runners-up to determine the district champion.

St. Andrews had three to Cathedral’s one, giving the Saints tennis team the district title.

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&uot;Their three runners-up to our one made the difference,&uot; said Cathedral tennis coach Lynn Ogden.

&uot;I think all the kids played well today,&uot; said St. Andrews tennis coach Bill Schmegal. &uot;Natchez Cathedral played real well.&uot;

In one of two upsets in the tournament, Cathedral eight-grader Bennett Jeansonne, the number two seed in the boys singles division, defeated sophomore Shelby Joe of St. Andrews, the division’s top seed, in a three-set thriller in the finals, 6-1, 2-6, 6-1.

&uot;It was a hard match. It was very equally matched,&uot; Jeansonne said.

As to what coach Ogden told Jeansonne said before his big match, he said, &uot;Stay focused and play my game more than play his game.&uot;

In the other upset, Cathedral’s girls doubles team of senior Jennifer Blain and freshman Kelin Hendricks (playing in place of an injured Stacy Verruchi), the number two seed in the division, defeated senior Michelle Temple and junior Susanna Morse of St. Andrews, the division’s top seed, 7-5, 7-5.

&uot;It was a hard match,&uot; Blain said. &uot;We played well together.&uot;

&uot;On the happy end, Bennett, the eighth-grader, upset the number one seed,&uot; Ogden said. &uot;Kelin Hendricks stepped in to varsity and the team came up with the upset.&uot;

&uot;The girls doubles and boys singles could’ve gone either way,&uot; Schmegal said.

In the girls singles final, top-seeded and senior Phyllis Joe (Shelby Joe’s sister) of St. Andrews had little problem in defeating second-seeded and senior Jessica Phillips of Wesson, 6-1, 6-0.

Phillips defeated Cathedral senior Erin Wentworth, 6-4, 6-4, to reach the finals.

&uot;A lot of heartbreak for me because I wanted my girls single (Wentworth) to make it to State,&uot; Ogden said.

In the boys doubles final, top-seeded, twin brothers and freshmen James and John Harris of Morton defeated St. Andrews’s team of second-seeded and seniors Chris Grillus and Jay Songharuen, 6-4, 6-2.

&uot;It was hard. It was real hot,&uot; James Harris said. &uot;They had us down early and we just had to not get mad at either and keep concentrating. We knew they were going to make some mistakes.&uot;

In the mixed doubles finals, second-seeded Nick Clark, a senior, and Maeve Wilson, a seventh-grader, from St. Andrews, defeated top-seeded Kate Reid, a freshman, and Chase Ogden, a sophomore, from Cathedral, 6-2, 6-2.

&uot;I was disappointed with the mixed doubles,&uot; Ogden said. &uot;They didn’t play the way they’re capable of playing. I expect them to step up at State.&uot;

The state tournament will be played in Jackson on May 1 and 2.