Mount Airy ran roughshod over the Northwest 1A Conference as a team, but the individual conference tournament is much more balanced.
Despite running the table in the conference during the regular season, the first day of the league tournament demonstrated the top-to-bottom strength of the NW1A, and the Lady Bears will have just one entry left when the teams play the semifinals and finals this afternoon on the Lady Bears’ courts.
Conference rival East Surry will have plenty of interest in the doubles competition, where the Lady Cardinals’ team of Klaudia Tucker and Mikayla Manuel upset Mount Airy’s Logan King and Elizabeth Bray 6-2, 1-5, 7-5 to advance to today’s semis against Brittney Brown and Abigail Williams of North Stokes. The other half of the draw also has an East Surry team in it, as the Lady Cardinals’ top seeded team of Haley Jennelle and Abigail Martin advanced with a 6-1, 6-2 victory over North Stokes’ Tessa Sprinkle and Brianna Lester.
Jennelle and Martin will play Marion Sloyan and Lydia Cortes of Bishop McGuinness in a semifinal today at 4:30. Sloyan and Cortes beat the Lady Bears’ Maya Hicks and Lisa Omuro 6-3, 6-4 to advance to the semis.
In the singles, Mount Airy’s Elizabeth Marion is the school’s last player standing. She defeated Bishop’s Kennedy Barber 7-6 (8-5), 6-4 to advance to today’s semifinal at 4:30 against Atkins’ Diana Alexandrov. Alexandrov defeated Sarah Mann of East Surry 6-3, 6-1 on Tuesday to move on.
Mount Airy’s Bailey Jackson looked set to upset Atkins’ third-seeded Yinka Mason in the quarterfinals, scoring a 6-0 victory in set one, but lost a service break to Mason at 2-1 in set two and ended up losing the set. In a deciding third set, Mason claimed the victory 0-6, 6-3, 6-4. She will advance to face Bishop’s Becky Auger in today’s semifinals. Auger beat Carson Payne of East Surry in the other quarterfinal to advance.
Mann and Payne both won preliminary round matches in the singles to make the field of eight. Mann defeated Morgan Rogers of North Stokes 6-1, 6-0, and Payne downed the Lady Vikings’ Morgan Rogers 2-6, 6-2, 7-5.
Semifinals will all take place at 4:30 today, with the third-place and championship matches to follow at 6:30.