Villa Maria’s Hatcher and Sweeney win district doubles title

Villa Maria Academy’s Reagan Hatcher and Kate Sweeney did not let the fact they had not played together on the same court deter them from winning the PIAA District One Class AA doubles title Oct. 22 at Legacy Youth Tennis and Education Center.
Entering the tournament as the top seed, the duo overcame a slow start in the championship match to defeat Lower Moreland’s Allison Oblon & Elizabeth Berzin in straight sets and earn a spot in the PIAA Class AA state doubles tournament that will be held on November 6th and 7th at the Hershey Racquet Club.
“It’s an awesome feeling,” said Hatcher, who will be going to the state doubles tournament for the second consecutive year (last year with Danielle Rufus). “Tennis does not get much attention at Villa Maria so it’s a great accomplishment for us to make the state doubles tournament.”
“It’s crazy,” Sweeney said referring to winning the district title and earning a berth to the state Class AA doubles tournament. “I only play tennis now so it’s a great feeling that I get to keep playing high school athletics.”
Hatcher/Sweeney will open play against Sydney Nye and Kelsie Stubblebine (ELCO), the No. 3 seed from district three on November 6 at 1:30
Similar to their other matches, Hatcher and Sweeney fell behind early trailing 4-1 in the first set of the championship match. Falling behind early proved to be an obstacle the pair were able to overcome running off five straight games to capture the first set 6-4.
It looked as though the roll the pair got on would keep going as the Hurricanes raced out to a 3-0 lead in the second set before the Lions roared back to take a 5-4 advantage. As it appeared the Lions would force a third set, Hatcher and Sweeney took a deep breath and rolled off three consecutive games to win the set 7-5 and the championship.
“We just try to stay calm during matches,” said Hatcher. “We laugh a lot on the court and I think that helps us stay relaxed and focused.”
Sweeney added, “We did not have a chance to play together during the season but we did play next to each other. We would cheer each other on so when we played together we needed to focus on communication. We have great chemistry. That definitely helped.”

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