BEAVERCREEK — While the veteran heavy hitters were slugging it out on the singles courts, Beavercreek’s doubles tandems earned the Beavers a narrow team win over a solid Bellbrook squad, Sept. 18, on the Beavercreek High School tennis courts.
Undefeated singles player Andrea Szep claimed a 6-0, 6-1 win over Beavercreek’s Dhira Venkatramani at first singles, but then the Beavers’ Julia Bays won quickly at second singles 6-0, 6-0 over the Golden Eagles’ Nitika Arora. Third singles’ Anika Arora, of Bellbrook, returned the 6-0, 6-0 favor to claim the Golden Eagles’ second singles win, this one over Beavercreek’s Kensington Lutz, which gave the visitors a 2-1 overall team match lead.
But then Beavercreek’s doubles pairs of Taylor Schaaf and Katie-Ann Wuehl at first doubles, and the Chloe Stanforth-Courtney Knight duo at second, each claimed straight-set wins to give the host Beavers a 3-2 nonleague win.
The Schaaf-Wuehl pair claimed a 6-3, 6-0 win over Bellbrook’s Ines Flores and Ramya Pandrangi at first doubles. The law firm of Stanforth and Knight battled to a 6-2, 6-4 win over Golden Eagles Annie Orbash and Gigi Painter.
“It seems like every year this match ends up 3-2 one way or the other,” Bellbrook coach Dean Grisso said. “Two years ago, it was 3-2 Beavercreek. Last year, it was 3-2 us. Now this year, they win 3-2. It’s always going to be a tough, competitive match between us.”
Grisso said ‘Creek’s Venkatramani and Bays could easily be interchangeable at first or second singles. “And his doubles teams really do a nice job, too. I don’t know what their record is, but they should be doing pretty well this season,” he said.
With the win, Beavercreek is now 10-5 overall. The Beavers will close out their regular season schedule with a Greater Western Ohio Conference battle with American East division foe Centerville at 5 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 20 on the Elks’ courts. They will then return to Centerville for the GWOC tournament on Tuesday, Sept. 25.
Head coach Bill Stanforth was at the Beavercreek junior varsity match on Tuesday, so assistant Kathy Staiger provided coaching advice during the matches, then fellow assistant Shannon Young and volunteer coach Abby Flohre finished up.
“Our doubles teams played really strong today. We had a tough match (Monday) against Oakwood (a 5-0 loss), so it was good to see them rebound like that today,” Young said. “As a team, I think we’re doing a little better than we expected. We’re really young, with just one senior (Venkatramani) on varsity. … Our third singles (Lutz) and second doubles (Stanforth and Knight) either hadn’t played last year or were on the JV team, so we’re very pleased with how everyone’s doing.”
Bellbrook (9-5) will play the second of a challenging five-match road trip at 4 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 19 at Butler. After that, they play at Oakwood (Sept. 20), at Lakota West (Sept. 24) then at Springboro (Sept. 25) before closing out the regular season at home in the Five Seasons Sports Club against Springfield (Sept. 27).
Contact John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123.