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St. Mary’s wins district girls tennis title

Sparked by a championship effort in doubles, the St. Mary’s girls tennis team was able to secure a team title in the Class 4A/3A/2A/1A District 3 championships Friday at North Medford High.

St. Mary’s senior Hannah Poisson and sophomore Pratheeka Weerakoon paved the way for the Crusaders, who won the district title with a total of 53 points.

Poisson and Weerakoon dominated their finals match against top-seeded Maddie McLaughlin and Haley Ross of Marist, scoring a 6-0, 6-0 victory to advance into next weekend’s state tournament.

The St. Mary’s duo gave up a combined 13 games in four matches, stamping their spot in the championship match with a 6-1, 6-4 semifinals win over Marist’s Reeve Helvoight and Tyler Harding, who went on to place third.

The McLaughlin-Ross pairing edged Sofia Castillo and Nicola Chmelir 7-6 (7-4), 6-3 in the quarterfinals.

Fellow Crusaders Katherine Mejia and Audrey Zhang also advanced to the quarterfinal round, where they lost 6-0, 2-6, 10-4 to Malayna Waine and Nyla Reerslev of Junction City. Waine and Reerslev had previously edged the Cascade Christian duo of Makenna Dunn and Carlee Broadbent 7-6, 4-6, 10-7 in the second round.

Patricia Dougherty from Klamath Union won the singles title with a 6-1, 6-0 decision over Christina Nguyen of Marist. Dougherty earlier beat Annabelle Mayerle of St. Mary’s 6-0, 6-0 in the quarterfinals and Timnah Roberson of Cascade Christian 6-1, 6-1 in the second round.

Nguyen topped St. Mary’s sophomore Sunga Kim in the semifinal round, 6-0, 6-3. Kim went on to finish fourth overall for the Crusaders behind Sutherlin’s Addison Roberts, who topped Lexi Mills of St. Mary’s in the quarterfinals 6-3, 6-3.

Cascade Christian’s Lily Preszler also fell victim to Nguyen in the second round, 6-1, 6-1.

Also on Friday, Ashland seniors Mina Schepmann and Ian Bower won the Class 5A Midwestern League boys doubles title over James Lovdokken and Jensen Taylor of Thurston to earn their spot in next weekend’s state tournament.

Earlier in the week, the St. Mary’s tandem of Jackson Lopiano and Calvin Chmelir finished runner-up in boys doubles to Marist’s Peyton Tyner and Jack Kiefer, while Crusaders freshman Titus Stark-Seymour placed fourth in boys singles to also advance to the state tourney.

The St. Mary's girls tennis team poses with their Class 4A/3A/2A/1A District 3 championship trophy Friday at North Medford High. Photo courtesy of Gabby Sullins