Susanna Chernishoff and Sami Ingle deliver on the No. 4 court to clinch a victory for the Cougars.
AURORA North Marion girls tennis coach Pat ODell pulled aside his No. 4 doubles players during a brief break in action, asked them if they wanted a little extra pressure and told them that the team victory was still up for grabs.
But Canby partners Susanna Chernishoff and Sami Ingle already were applying pressure themselves.
With a strong performance in what turned out to be the final game of the second set, Chernishoff and Ingle pulled off a 7-5, 6-4 victory to seal a 5-3 overall triumph for the Cougars in nonconference competition April 4 at North Marion High School.
Chernishoff and Ingles outing capped a doubles sweep for Canby, which is amid its third year under coach Caitlin Russell and gearing up for the perennially tough Three Rivers League.
We have a lot of people who come out to have fun, but theyre competitive and they want to win, Cougars senior Ashley Evans said. Some of them are just starting out, so the key is just getting everything down and being consistent.
The Huskies, who have faced several large-school teams in preseason play, are also characterized by youth and inexperience this season. Of the 12 players in their varsity lineup against Canby, nine are eligible to return next year.
They fell to South Salem, North Salem and La Salle Prep in three early-season duels.
For having such a young group, theyre playing pretty well, said ODell, who has been coaching North Marions team since 1985. We have only three kids who were in the varsity lineup full-time last year, and were playing mostly 5A and 6A schools in the preseason. Were seeing some good talent.
Both area programs are going through droughts in state representation. The Cougars have not advanced any players to the OSAA championships since Sarah Payne and Kaylee Hansen earned a doubles bid in 2010. The Huskies have not had any qualifiers since Kayla Carroll and Brean Swanson secured a doubles berth in 2007.
ODell said the North Marion player with the best shot of reaching the state tournament this year is junior Emma Snyder, who holds the No. 1 singles slot. She defeated Canby junior Mindy Wilmes in straight sets, 6-0, 6-0.
The Cougars chances of state representation this season likely rest with Evans and senior partner Morgan Meisenheimer, who teamed up to notch the programs only championship-bracket victory at last years district tournament. Evans and Meisenheimer defeated Huskies seniors Kayla Parkinson and Victoria Suchanski on the top doubles court, 7-5, 6-1.
Jessica Saman and Kelsey Snoderly maintained Canbys upper hand in doubles with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Tiara Jacoby and Laura Grigorieff on the No. 2 court.
Kayla Davis and Abbie Lemuz also delivered for the Cougars, topping North Marion partners Rachel Breneman and Olivia Christiansen in No. 3 doubles competition, 6-2, 6-4.
That result left Canby with a 4-3 lead as Chernishoff and Ingle battled Huskies partners Chloe Studer and Abby Guzman.
After winning the opening set on a tiebreaker, Chernishoff and Ingle found themselves leading 5-4 in a back-and-forth second set. Chernishoffs powerful volley at the net put an end to the match, after which the two doubles pairs briefly congregated at the net to confirm it was over.
All of North Marions team points came in singles play. Snyder cruised on the No. 1 court, junior Naily Nevarez topped Kendall Herman 6-2, 6-2, and freshman Eliza Kauffman logged a 6-1, 6-1 decision over Mimi Thai. Huskies senior Rachel Dahlke (tendonitis) was not in the lineup.
The only three-set match of the day was played at No. 3 singles, where Canbys Rachel Fox outlasted North Marions Melixa Botello 6-2, 2-6, 6-4.
AT A GLANCE
Canby 5, North Marion 3
April 4 at North Marion High School
1. Emma Snyder (NM) d. Mindy Wilmes, 6-0, 6-0
2. Naily Nevarez (NM) d. Kendall Herman, 6-2, 6-2
3. Rachel Fox (Canby) d. Melixa Botello, 6-2, 2-6, 6-4
4. Eliza Kauffman (NM) d. Mimi Thai, 6-1, 6-1
1. Ashley Evans/Morgan Meisenheimer (Canby) d. Kayla Parkinson/Victoria Suchanski, 6-4 (7-5), 6-1
2. Jessica Saman/Kelsey Snoderly (Canby) d. Tiara Jacoby/Laura Grigorieff, 6-3, 6-2
3. Kayla Davis/Abbie Lemuz (Canby) d. Rachel Breneman/Olivia Christiansen, 6-2, 6-4
4. Susanna Chernishoff/Sami Ingle (Canby) d. Chloe Studer/Abby Guzman, 7-5, 6-4