Short-handed Dowagiac falls to Three Rivers

Published 8:00 am Saturday, April 22, 2023

THREE RIVERS — Tammi Spivey expects her Dowagiac girls tennis team to be more competitive once her Chieftains gain more experience this spring.

A short-handed Dowagiac squad took the court for just the third time all season in Friday’s Wolverine Conference match at Three Rivers.

Due to previous commitments by four of its players, Dowagiac was able to fill just five of the eight flights in a 8-0 loss to the Wildcats.

“Usually we have 12 players, but tonight we had four players who had prior commitments. The weather was beautiful today so that wasn’t a hindrance in game play, Spivey said. “These girls play and communicate well on the court. We just have to work on our depth perception and hand-eye coordination and our doubles flights need to work on communicating better with one another.

“This was just our third match. We got a late start to our season and our courts weren’t quite ready to play on at the beginning of the season. We are making improvement and I think the girls are learning and working at the next practice and match to improve and get better.”

At No. 1 singles, Dowagiac’s Hazel Kelly was defeated 2-6, 1-6 by Abby Lemacks from Three Rivers. At No. 2, Dowagiac’s Brooklyn Smith lost 0-6, 2-6 to Emily Workman. At No. 3, Dowagiac’s Lauren Balsbaugh suffered a 0-6, 0-6 defeat to Bella Mangold.

Dowagiac’s No. 3 doubles team of Olivia Stockwell and Arlaina Dudley bowed to Allie Lundquist and Danielle Artank from Three Rivers 0-6, 0-6.

At No. 4 doubles, Dowagiac’s Jenna White and Sara Torbet lost to Caydence Kinney and Lucy Olson of Three Rivers 0-6, 1-6

Three Rivers’ Laynie Zabonick won her No. 4 singles match by 2-0, 2-0 default. The Wildcats’ No. 1 combination of Lily Zabonick and Maggie Gose and the No. 2 duo of Logann Chrisman and Lexi Page also won by 2-0, 2-0 default.

Three Rivers, a squad which features seven senior starters in its starting rotation, was playing its fifth event of the spring.

“As a team, we are learning different strategies and working on our mechanics. Today our goal was to keep the ball in play and be more consistent,” said Three Rivers head coach Don Zabonick.