The Columbus East girls tennis team put on its strongest performance of the season Wednesday night as it defeated visiting Shelbyville 5-0.
“We played exceptionally well tonight,” East coach Cheryl McGee said. “We hit the ball well and didn’t force many errors. We played with much focus tonight.”
Olympians senior Ashlee Hasson never dropped a game in her match against the Golden Bears’ Bri Ayers to win 6-0, 6-0.
The same could be said for East junior Megan Galle. She won her match easily against Shelbyville’s Maddie Clark 6-0, 6-0.
Both matches lasted less than 30 minutes.
“Ashlee and Megan made very few mistakes tonight,” McGee said. “They never forced anything and were very comfortable out there.”
East’s Alexa Husmann-Miller won against Marissa Akers 6-2, 6-1 at No. 3 singles.
“I did a great job staying focused and patient tonight,” Husmann-Miller said. “I played smart on every shot I hit. I didn’t want to just try to ace every serve or make an unforced error when I did not need to.”
“She played very smart tennis tonight,” McGee said. “Marissa played her match tonight with a different kind of pace on the ball that Alexa wasn’t use to playing. Once she figured it out, though, she beat her at own game and took control of the match the rest of the way.
With the victory, Husmann-Miller moves to 6-1 in singles competition this season after playing doubles the past two years and the early part of this season.
“The most difficult part I had to adjust to was the fact of not having a teammate beside me,” Husmann-Miller said. “There is not someone there to pick me up, talk to me or help me get focused when you are mentally feeling down. I also have to make sure I am not at the net so much like I used to be. It takes a lot of mental toughness and patience to play singles, and I have adjusted well so far.”
“Her patience level at singles has risen from being way low to very high right now,” McGee said. “At times, she will be hitting the ball with her opponent back and forth hoping she makes a mistake, but now she is forcing her opponent to make those mistakes and win easy points.”
At No. 1 doubles, the Olympians’ Pooja Pandita and Aneta Smidova struggled a bit in the first set but still managed a 6-4 win. They would go on to win the second set 6-2.
“They had a rough day tonight, especially early on,” McGee said. “They made unforced errors and couldn’t keep the ball in play because they kept over-hitting it. They should be OK because they both really work well together.”
At No. 2 doubles, Lauren Fox and Shyanne Reynolds of East defeated Cassady Skipton and Alivia Chenoweth 6-1, 6-3.