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Trip to NJCAA Nationals ‘Well Worth It’

Article by: Pete Hayes, the Telegraph, phayes@thetelegraph.com

TYLER, Texas — A trip that took the Lewis and Clark Community College women’s tennis team come 1,300 miles was well worth it, according to Trailblazers Coach Bron Wilkerson.

After all, it was a trip to the NJCAA National Championships.

The L&C doubles team of Sara Kreutztrager and Kori Obert advanced to the quarterfinal round and a par of singles players made it out of the first round before falling at the championships this week at Tyler Junior College’s John Medlock Murphy Tennis Center.

The L&C team, which advanced to the national tourney by winning the Region 24 championship, also had a pair of singles players advance to the second round at the tourney.

“It was a huge deal and a good experience,” said Wilkerson. “Our girls played well and had a pretty good tournament. It was well worth it to make the trip.”

The five-day tournament was moved to a pair of alternate sites in Dallas on Wednesday and Thursday because of rain.

Kreutztrager and Obert saw their tourney come to and end in Tuesday’s quarterfinals when they lost 6-0, 6-0 to eventual national finalists Fabiola Candal Ranalli and Renata Gonzalez-Leon of Hillsborough (Florida) Community College.

“There were a lot of outstanding players and a lot of (NCAA) Division I coaches there,” Wilkerson said. “They were looking at our players and were being recruited. It was definitely a good trip for our team.”

Kreutztrager and Obert, who had a first-round bye, advanced to the quarterfinals with a 6-0, 6-2 victory over Sophia Calderon and Amber Wascomb of Meridian Community College in Monday’s second round.

In other doubles action, LC’s teams of Mikaela Griechen and Miranda Griechen, as well as Ashton Tewell and Noni Updyke lost first-round matches.

In singles play, Ashton Twell of L&C won her No. 3 singles opener against Emily Perry of Wallace State on Sunday 7-5, 6-4, before falling in the second round on Monday to Nicole Malddonado of Collin College 6-0, 6-0.

L&C’s Kori Obert was also a first-round winner, downing Madison Shows of Copiah-Lincoln, Mississippi 1-6, 6-2, 6-2 in No. 6 singles. Obert lost to Coraline Lamer of Cowley College in the second round 6-0, 6-1.

Also in singles, LC netters had first-round losses by Miranda Griechen lost to Georjemah Row of Georgia Military at No. 1 6-0, 6-1; Mikaela Greichen to Olivia Hayes of Central Alabama at No. 2 6-1, 6-2; Updyke to Monika Canton of Laredo at No. 4 6-0, 6-2 and Kreutztrager to Sarah Martin of Barton at No. 5 6-1, 6-2.

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