High School Sports

Fort Mill girls’ tennis one match away from region title — and perfect season

With a 13-0 record and one match left in the regular season, the Fort Mill girls’ tennis team is not only looking at the possibility of another region title — but also a perfect regular season.

Fort Mill has one match left in the regular season this week against rivals Nation Ford. A win against the Falcons gives the Yellow Jackets the Region 3-5A title outright, while a loss would give them a tie with Nation Ford for the title. Nation Ford has lost just once in the region this season — and that came to Fort Mill, 5-1.

Fort Mill head coach Angela Struve said she wasn’t sure what this year was going to bring entering the season.

“The season ended up stronger that I had anticipated,” she said. “The girls are playing at a higher level and they show up to compete every match.”

In the Jackets’ most recent match against Rock Hill on Tuesday, Oct. 8, Fort Mill won 6-0 and only lost five games in the entire match. Every match was won in straight sets as No. 1 singles player Jamie Petrella won 6-1, 6-0 and No. 2 singles player Kaedyn Willis won 6-0, 6-0.

Rylie Wartinger won 6-1, 6-1 for Fort Mill at No. 3 singles, and Madison McCarty won 6-0, 6-0 at No. 4 singles. Julia Biggers won 6-2, 6-0 at No. 5 singles, and in the only doubles match, Ruhi Patel and Meredith Bhend teamed to win 6-0, 6-0.

The last time Fort Mill went undefeated in the regular season was in 2014, but the team lost to Dorman that year in the first round of the playoffs at home. While Struve is hoping to beat rivals Nation Ford, she knows the bigger picture comes with the start of the playoffs.

The playoffs open Oct. 23 with Fort Mill having a home match in the first round.

“I didn’t anticipate an undefeated season,” Struve said. “You always come in and hope you have a good season.”

The Jackets were originally supposed to play at Nation Ford late last week, but it was postponed due to school being canceled because of the water main break in Rock Hill.

Mac Banks: mbanks@comporium.net, @MacBanksFM