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Sept. 18, 2013

Girls' varsity tennis disposes of Damascus 5-2

by Jacob Popper, Op/Ed Editor
The girls’ varsity tennis team was able to shake off the rust of not playing for a week and beat the Damascus Swarmin' Hornets, taking five of seven matches to get back over the .500 mark at 2-1. The Swarmin Hornets fell below the plateau, dropping to 1-2. It was also the first division match and division victory for the lady blazers.
Captains Therese Nkeng and Christine Jean easily won their doubles match, 6-1, 6-0. Isabel Hendrix
Captains Therese Nkeng and Christine Jean easily won their doubles match, 6-1, 6-0.


“It was our first divisional match,” head coach David Ngbea said, “it was important for us to start on a good foot.” Where the Blazers won, they won big. In all five Blair victories, Damascus only won a combined nine games.

As leaders often do, senior team captains and number one doubles pair Therese Nkeng and Christine Jean cruised to a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Julia Holt and Stephanie Kriz of Damascus. After missing some shots early, the pair pulled it together. “Consistency is key,” Nkeng said.

Another advantage to winning big was that it gave them a cushion to take some chances. “Normally you just keep the ball in play,” Jean said, “but then you hit it harder and it occasionally works.”

The rust also took an early toll on the Blazers number two singles player Amy Li. After quickly falling behind 2-1 in the first set, the sophomore had a short conversation with Ngbea and then didn’t drop another game, giving her a big 6-2, 6-0 win against Damascus’ Madison Smith. Ironically, Ngbea even told Li that she should be winning big. “Mr. Ngbea told me I shouldn’t lose a single game against her,” Li said. This was a common start for Li. “Every game I was bad at the beginning, but you just have to keep getting better,” she said.

Blair will have to quickly apply the lessons it learned this week, as the team will be right back at it tomorrow making up a game against Gaithersburg. “We need to maintain our positive attitude and minimize errors,” Ngbea said.

The girls’ tennis team will play its next home game on Thursday, September 19 against Clarksburg High School at 3:30.



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