Vikings’ doubles trouble Spanish Springs | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Vikings’ doubles trouble Spanish Springs

Steve Yingling

Ally Abicht, left, makes a game-winning shot at the net Tuesday while she and her No. 3 South Tahoe High School doubles partner Mckensie Pimley battle Spanish Springs in South Lake Tahoe.

A fast start was mandatory for the South Tahoe High girls’ tennis team with the toughest match of the season looming on Thursday in Reno.

After struggling out of the gate a year ago, the Vikings were all business Tuesday in dispatching Spanish Springs 37-8 in their season opener in South Lake Tahoe.

South Tahoe won 14 of 18 matches and proved to be just as dominant with its substitute teams on the STHS courts. All three of coach Pat Fagen’s reserve doubles teams came through with victories.

“We have four kids who don’t start and we don’t drop off at all with them on the court … we’ve never had that,” Fagen said.

The Vikings won all nine doubles matches with Jenny Schmedes and Andrea Killebrew winning 6-2, 6-2; Katie Killebrew and Chela Wahl cruising 6-1, 6-0; and Ally Abicht and McKensie Pimley nearly as dominant in their pair of 6-1 victories.

“It’s a good indicator of where we are and ah, we did work hard this summer,” Killebrew said. “I think we’ll do better this season because we have better singles players and more depth on our team.”

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The Vikings did lose four singles matches, but the team’s top player Masha Long won both of her contests. She blanked Kim Griffin 6-0 and then outshot Danielle Jackson, one of the league’s top players, 6-4 before being substituted out.

Long neutralized Jackson’s quickness by keeping her on the baseline as much as possible.

“She moved really fast and got everything back,” Long said. “I did the best I could returning everything. I don’t think she could handle my deep shots.”

Lacey Leonard, Lauren Sannazzaro and Jade Coppel also won singles matches for the Vikings. Coppel was substituted in during the third round and smoked Spanish Springs’ No. 3 player Ashley Grey 6-1.

Winning their first career varsity matches were the duo of Brooke Borges and McKenzie Usher and the team of Chantel Kent and Kaitlin Coyner. The former team won 6-4, while the latter was victorious 6-3.

Sydney Dufty and Lizzy Goldenberg picked up the Vikings’ final victory with an overpowering 6-1 triumph.

Now the Vikings can focus on league favorite Reno. The match begins at 3:30 p.m. Thursday in Reno.

“It was nice to get one under our belt before we go play them,” Fagen said. “We’re looking forward to the challenge of playing Reno.”