By Brad Fauber
WOODSTOCK -- Central found a happy medium between playing aggressive and playing relaxed in Wednesday's girls tennis match with Bull Run District foe Clarke County, and it paid off for the Falcons.
Central cruised to a 6-1 win over the visiting Eagles, nabbing its second straight victory in the process. The match was cut short due to heavy rain that descended upon W.O. Riley Park, and two doubles matches were not completed.
"I was pretty pleased with what we did," Falcons coach Mallory Skarupa said. "It's hard to find a balance between being relaxed and being aggressive, but I think we did that. I'm proud of them."
Central's (5-6, 2-1 Bull Run) top three singles players made quick work of their opponents early in the match, as juniors Katelyn Foltz, Rebecca Truban and Jackie Walsh each won their sets by large margins.
In No. 1 singles, Foltz broke serve quickly in the first game to take a 1-0 lead and pushed the margin to 2-0 before Clarke County senior Virginia Shake held serve to cut the deficit in half.
But that was the last time Shake found success against Foltz, who rolled through the next eight games to capture the 10-1 set win.
"It was a good win, but [Shake] is definitely a good player. She's very consistent," Foltz said. "She's very fast. She gets to a lot of balls, so it wasn't easy at all. I just had to relax more and trust my strokes. That third game, I was kind of holding back. She gets to everything and it gets kind of frustrating. I just had to be patient."
At No. 2 singles, Truban got redemption for a 10-8 loss to Eagles sophomore Callie Elliston earlier this month by topping Elliston 10-2 on Wednesday.
Truban jumped out to a 5-0 lead before she and Elliston split the next four games, but Truban won the next three games to take the set. Truban broke serve in the 10th game to take an 8-2 lead, and she again broke serve one game later as Elliston's forehand shot went wide to end the set.
"I did a lot better than I did last time. I was more into it this time, and I just tried to get every shot," Truban said. "Last time I wasn't really in it, I was kind of just frozen. But this time I hustled a little bit more and I tried to follow out my shots."
Walsh was also a big winner at No. 3 singles, beating Clarke County's Erika Hutchinson 10-1. Falcons senior Allison Bright was a 10-4 winner over Katy Kosiorek at No. 5 singles, and Central junior Natalie Batlle beat Samantha Smith 10-7 at No. 6 singles.
Clarke County's (2-10, 0-3) lone win came at No. 4 singles, as junior Tess Ashby was a 10-3 victor over Alissandra Rodriguez.
Dark clouds began creeping over the tennis courts as the two teams began the doubles matches, and the No. 1 doubles set was completed just minutes before the heavy rain began to fall.
The No. 2 and No. 3 doubles matches were not completed, although Central was leading 5-2 and 5-1 in those two sets respectively before players were forced to sprint from the court to escape the downpour.
At No. 1 doubles, Foltz and Truban beat the Clarke County duo of Shake and Elliston 10-0. Foltz and Truban nearly lost the first game of the set as they fell behind 40-15, but Truban recorded a pair of kills at the net to bring the game to deuce. An Eagles error later in the game gave Central a 1-0 lead, and Foltz and Truban rolled from there.
"We didn't play the first few matches [of the season] together, but once we finally got together, our chemistry has really started to come on," Foltz said.
Contact sports writer Brad Fauber at 540-465-5137 ext. 184, or firstname.lastname@example.org