MASON — Macy Hitchcock continues to set records for Eaton’s girls tennis program.
The freshman became the school’s first-ever district champion and state qualifier in tennis after going a perfect 4-0 last weekend at the Division II District tournament at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason.
She defeated defeated Bella Kirby (Indian Hill) in the semi-finals 6-0, 7-5, in her first match on Saturday, Oct. 12, then bounced Lily McCloskey (Oakwood) in finals 6-3, 7-5.
“Macy continued on Saturday what she started off on Thursday doing and that was winning,” Eaton coach John Hitchcock said. “She dominated her matches on Thursday, only losing one game and thereby securing her spot in the state tournament.”
She defeated Jenny Zhang of Indian Hill 6-0, 6-0 in the first round then beat Dakota Schroeder of Tippecanoe 6-0, 6-1 in the quarterfinals.
Saturday’s matches proved too be a tougher.
“Saturday was the semi-finals and finals where Macy was able to get through a little more formidable opponents. She started off strong in her match with Indian Hill then her opponent changed her tactics quite a bit and made the second set much more competitive” John Hitchcock said.
She trailed the entire time, but at 4-5 found a way to take control of the match like she did in the first set and reel off three hard fought games.
That setup another match with a familiar opponent for the district championship.
“For the fourth time in about five weeks she was up against a common foe from Oakwood. Luckily, Macy was prepared mentally because it can be easy to start overlooking an opponent you’ve played a lot but in this case she knew the Oakwood girl was going to be highly motivated to try and get a win,” John Hitchcock said. “It was high quality tennis on both sides but Macy was just able to hold her off as Oakwood made a really strong push in the second set.”
The coach said it was nice to see both player in the final from the Centerville sectional.
“It was also really refreshing to see an all Dayton finals. Usually this district is dominated by the Cincinnati and Mason area schools. A good sign for the strength of tennis in our area,” he said.
Macy Hitchcock will enter the state tournament as one of four No. 1 seeds.
“Hopefully, Macy can benefit from the this as she’ll be one of No. 1s in the state tournament. Obviously, this next step is the best of the best in high school tennis so you always hope you can position yourself with a favorable draw and being a No. 1 can help but it’s no guarantee,” John Hitchcock said.
In doubles play, the sister duo of Sophia and Grace Murphy lost their first round match to eventual state qualifiers Jessica August and Jessie Budde of Indian Hill, 6-3, 2-6, 6-3.
“Disappointing. I think, they let the match and the scale of it kind of get to them,” coach Hitchcock said. “I think it was more self inflicted. They were their own worst enemy there toward the end. They had momentum but let it get away.”
This was the third straight year at the district level for Sophia and second for Grace, who both played singles during the regular season, but were paired up for the postseason in hopes of reaching the district and possible state tournaments.
“It was a numbers game. But one that worked out. It got them her,” coach Hitchcock said. “It’s all you can ask really. Especially given our history. It really was a successful season for them and us overall.”
The state tournament will be held on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 18-19 at the Lindner Family Tennis Center. Play is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. Admission is $10 and is cash only.
Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4056 or followe on Twitter @emowen_RH