Vikings tennis team aiming high

Vikings tennis team aiming high

DANVILLE — The Danville girls’ tennis team crossed a couple more goals off its preseason checklist Saturday.

Next up: their state-tournament target.

“We’d like to see the team finish in the top 20,” third-year Vikings coach Mark Bacys said.

If that happens, it would be quite a leap from last season, when the Vikings tied for 46th place. But after winning a third straight sectional title and qualifying the maximum number of singles players (two) and doubles teams (two) for state, Danville has reason to be optimistic.

“Obviously, it’s a nice accomplishment,” said Bacys, whose team’s other goal — a Big 12 Conference title — also was met.

The Vikings edged runner-up Centennial 33-29 for the sectional crown, but the Chargers didn’t go title-less, thanks to Lauren Neitzel. The Centennial sophomore, a sectional singles runner-up last year, defeated Danville’s Taylor Ellis 6-2 6-1.

“She played awesome,” Chargers coach Teri Scaggs. “She changed her game (during the match) when she needed to change her game. She didn’t need to hit hard all the time. She really came through.”

In an all-Danville doubles final, Rachael and Rebecca Lewis prevailed over Amy Shah and Neha Patel 6-1 6-4.

“It was nice to see both your teams play in the finals, but also it’s not the most fun because they’re both on your team and you can’t really root for one of them,” Bacys said. “All you can hope for is that they have a good match, and they did.”

Like Danville, Centennial advanced two singles players and two doubles teams to state. Among them was the unseeded doubles tandem of Jacklyn Gunn and Gressa Olson, who placed fourth.