The West Lincoln High School women’s tennis team made history earlier in the week, capturing their first conference championship in school history.
The team defeated Lincolnton on Monday by a score of 9-0 to clinch the Catawba Valley 2A Conference championship with a perfect 6-0 mark, and finishing off a 10-1 regular season overall.
West head coach Ken Hilderbran’s squad knocked on the door of a championship a season ago even with the distraction of Covid-19. The Lady Rebels posted a 6-1 record, losing only to East Lincoln 5-4 in a highly-contested match.
Hilderbran noted that the short turnaround between last season and this season made his team better and hungrier for a championship.
Senior Etta Godfrey, along with partner Brogan Heavner, finished in the semifinals of the state tournament last season.
“Godfrey decided then that she wanted to play singles, so our focus was on that all summer,” said Hilderbran. “She is one of two seniors and our captain. She has done an outstanding job as leader and as the number-one seed.”
Godfrey’s only loss for the season in either singles or doubles came to Alexa Allison from Newton-Conover, who was third in the state last year in singles. Godfrey finished second in the conference tournament on Wednesday.
Fellow senior Megan Cody has performed well. She went through the conference season without a loss in singles or doubles. Cody was partnered with Godfrey in doubles, where they played the number-two seed all season. Cody finished third in the CVAC conference tournament on Wednesday.
The Lady Rebels’ doubles team is composed of Chloe Norman, the number-two singles player, and Bailey Huss, the team’s number-three singles player. “They finished off last season with a win over the third-seeded doubles team in the region and have just continued that success,” Hilderbran said.
The duo completed the conference regular season without a loss in singles or doubles and were seeded number one in the conference tournament, winning that championship with a final 6-1, 6-0 victory over Maiden.
The Lady Rebels won the conference tournament championship on Wednesday for the second year in a row.
Up next, West Lincoln will play in the dual team state playoffs next Wednesday. The team will have four players in the individual Regional next Friday and Saturday October 22nd and 23rd.
Team members are (1)Etta Godfrey (10-1 singles, 9-0 doubles); (2)Chloe Norman (11-0 singles, 10-1 doubles); (3)Bailey Huss (10-1 singles, 10-1 doubles); (4)Megan Cody (9-2 singles, 9-0 doubles); (5)Kaitlyn Ballenger (8-3 singles, 8-0 doubles); (6)Addison Sain (10-1 singles, 8-1 doubles); (7)Laura Willis, (8)Jada Willis, (9)Hallie Black and (10)Peyton Taylor.
(Published October 15, 2021)