North Surry came up just short of its first tennis win in a nail-biter with South Stokes Tuesday.
The Lady Greyhounds faced three tough opponents in their nonconference schedule, losing to East Surry, Mount Airy and East Wilkes.
Going into the first match of the Western Piedmont schedule, rookie coach Maggie McKee was feeling as many butterflies as her players.
The Hounds got off to a good start.
Top seed Sarah Glasco and second seed Abby Lawson jumped out to 3-0 leads in their singles play.
Rebecca Parsons took a 2-1 lead at the third spot, while Hannah Southern, Bailey Atkins and Taylor Tickle were in close matches, down 1-2 each.
Things looked even better as Glasco improved to 5-0 against Jenny Glidewell, and Lawson went up 5-2 on Taylor Evans.
Parsons stretched her lead to 5-2 on Julie Linville, and Tickle came from behind to take a 4-3 lead on Jenny Smith.
The Hounds looked poised to go up a set in four of the six matches.
However, South Stokes’ Linville won the next five games to take a 7-5 set over Parsons. Linville then finished a 6-0 second set for the win.
Tickle won the first set 6-4 in her first start, but seemed to wear down. Smith came back to take the second set 6-4, then won the third set tiebreaker 10-1.
Those two matches proved pivotal.
Glasco finished off a 6-0, 6-0 win with some powerful ground strokes. Lawson had an easy second set for a 6-4, 6-0 win.
Southern lost 6-2, 6-1 to Kaitlyn Denny, and Atkins fell 6-1, 6-2 to Kristen Denny.
That gave the Sauras a 4-2 lead going into doubles.
Glidewell and Kaitlyn Denny were ahead 7-6 when Glasco and Lawson won three straight games for a 10-7 win.
Atkins and Cassidy Willard pulled away from Kristen Denny/Nora Skinner for a 10-4 win.
However, the Hounds couldn’t pull out that fifth team point as Evans/Linville beat Parsons and Southern 10-1.
McKee admitted that the match was a heart-breaker.
“But I guarantee when we get a win, we will realize how good that feels,” she said. And then, she said she bets that the girls won’t lose any more close 5-4 matches as they will find a way to get the wins.
“I can tell we’re getting better every time we go out on the court,” she said.
The Hounds travel to Forbush on Thursday for another Western Piedmont conference match.