Bobcats earn another top 10 finish

Published 8:16 pm Sunday, June 5, 2022

ANN ARBOR — For the third time in four years, the Brandywine girls tennis team finished in the top 10 at the Division 4 Michigan High School Athletic Association State Finals.

The Bobcats are just one of three public schools to place in the top 15 at the state finals. The other 12 schools are private or parochial schools.

The strong finish helps cap off another successful season for Brandywine, which won its ninth consecutive BCS Athletic Conference championship and its 11th Division 4 regional crown in the last 14 years. The Bobcats, who are leaving the BCS to join a new conference in the fall, is the only girls tennis team to win a BCS title.

“Just a great way for us to end our season by topping off a conference championship and a regional championship by finishing in the top 10 at the state finals,” said veteran Brandywine Coach and Hall of Famer Joe Marazita. “It was a total team effort as seven of our flights won, which gave us our 10 total points.”

The Bobcats had a pair of doubles teams reach the quarterfinals.

The No. 1 doubles team of Abbie Hubbard and Emma Hinsey (23-2) reached the quarterfinals by defeating Avery Sanec and Claudia Haouilou, of Grosse Pointe Woods University of Liggett, 6-1 and 6-3, after an opening-round bye. No. 1 seed, and eventual state champion, Rukmini Nallamothu and Georgie Branch, of Ann Arbor Greenhills, eliminated Hubbard and Hinsey in the quarterfinals, 6-4 and 6-0.

The Bobcats’ No. 2 doubles team of Tressa Hullinger and Hope Typer (18-4) also drew an opening-round bye. They went on to defeat Royal Oak Shrine Catholic’s Kennedy Scher and Gabby Cormier 6-1 and 6-3 before falling to Bloomfield Academy of the Sacred Heart’s Jade Horcoff and Angelina Kakos 6-1 and 6-2 in the quarterfinals.

Brandywine’s No. 3 doubles team of Chloe Sidenbender and Dani Holden (22-1) won their first match against Ovid-Elsie’s Tori Maynard and Ellyanna Carman 6-2 and 6-3, but were defeated by the No. 6 seed, Portia Beebe and Kelly Minidis, of Elk Rapids, 6-3 and 6-1.

“Myself, Coach [Rich] Robbins, and Assistant Coach Caitlin Stanner couldn’t be more proud of this team as they really worked hard this year,” Marazita said. “We are really going to miss our two seniors — Jessica Williamson and Emma Hinsey — as they were team leaders and because of the COVID year, they actually played their first matches for Brandywine at No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles and both were all-conference and all-regional both years they were starters. What an accomplishment as they represented Brandywine well. And with us returning 10 starters, I can’t wait for next season to roll around.”