Benet Academy girls tennis returns to class 2A as a sectional host this season. The Redwings were winners of sectional championships in four of the last five seasons. Waubonsie Valley, Metea Valley, Naperville Central and Naperville North are all among the competitors as well. The top four finishers in singles and doubles will earn state qualification.
The singles championship match has a pair of freshman meeting up. Claire Lopatka from Benet Academy against the DVC Champion, Sofia Olaru from Naperville Central. Lopatka defeated Brooke Ittersagen from Wheaton Warrenville South in the semis while Olaru took down Waubonsie’s Talya Ertas in the quarterfinals and another Benet freshman, Meredith Converse in the semis. Lopatka with a perfectly placed backhand to take this point in the first set of the final.
These two matched up about three weeks ago at Naperville Central. Olaru got the edge that day, but as you can see, they are very evenly matched. In the end, Olaru puts this point away with a great shot and wins the sectional title 6-3, 6-2. Meredith Converse wins the third place match for the Redwings.
Now the doubles championship with more freshman heading to state. Brooke Coffman and Gabby Lee from Naperville North taking on Benet seniors Kaitlyn Lee and Felicity Kolb. Lee and Kolb would have qualified for state a year ago, but the tournament was canceled because of COVID.
Gabby Lee serves in the far court and volleys with Kaitlyn Lee. Check out the incredibly quick reaction from the 2019 1A state doubles champ as she digs out this return and the Redwings take the point.
Brooke Coffman serving now. She then puts Kolb in a tough spot with a low forehand. Gabby Lee then takes advantage with a smash. Huskies take set one 6-2.
But the veteran Redwings are not going down without a fight. Felicity Kolb unleashes a rocket forehand shot from near the back line for the point.
However, the young North duo has played beyond their years all season long. Naperville North wins the doubles sectional crown 6-2, 6-1 as Gabby Lee lines a shot through for a point.
Third Place Doubles
Now to the third place doubles match, another North vs Benet clash. Huskie seniors Callie Genovese and Tiffany Cheng taking on Claire Converse and Shane Delaney for the Redwings. Converse and Delaney upset Sarina Saleem and Sangita Siva from Metea Valley in the quarterfinals to earn their state spot. Cheng and Genovese win this volley for the early point.
Benet rolling later in set one as Delaney unleashes a perfect serve for the ace. They take the opening set 6-0.
The Redwings put this one away in the second set as Converse closes out the third place match with a strong smash. The senior will be heading to state for the first time as Benet wins the team sectional championship. Naperville North in second place while Naperville Central takes third. Neuqua Valley won the Lockport sectional title with all four singles and doubles teams qualifying for state as well.