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Evans, Overbay qualify for state

It was a busy and successful week for the Harrisonville girls tennis team.

Starting Oct. 5, the tennis team claimed it second consecutive district championship with a 5-1 victory over St. Michael at Harrisonville. The Lady Cats have been able to jump out to early leads with strong doubles play all season and the district tournament was no different. In No. 2 doubles, Elizabeth Allen and Kayleigh Norris fought hard as they were able to come away with a 8-6 win. In No. 1 doubles, Morgan Allen and Abby Overbay had spent the last two weeks focusing on singles and not playing doubles. This did not slow the pair down one bit as they would win 8-1 and give Harrisonville an early 2-1 lead.

Only needing three wins in singles to win districts, freshman Taylor Jennings started things off in No. 6 singles with a 6-3, 6-0 win. Evans took care of business in No. 1 singles with a 6-1, 6-4 win. This left the Lady Cats one win away from claiming the championship. It was Overbay who secured the team win with a 6-1, 6-3 victory in No. 2 singles. Overbay improves her record to 18-1 on the season.

There was limited time to celebrate the district championship as Evans, Overbay, Allen and Norris were all scheduled to compete in the sectional round of the state tournament Saturday in Lee’s Summit. Evans and Overbay competed in singles while Allen and Norris competed in doubles.

Allen and Norris took on a doubles team for Trenton where the girls jumped out an early lead. They were unable to capitalize as Trenton came back and won 7-6 (3), 6-1.

Any chance of Harrisonville having state qualifiers fell to Evans and Overbay in singles play. Overbay played a competitive opponent from Trenton, edging out a close first set before rolling to a decisive second set to win 6-4, 6-1.

Evans had the toughest battle, starting off a little slow and giving up the first set 1-6. Then Evans dug in, determined to get to the next round with a 6-2 second set. Evans fell behind early in the breaker, trailing 2-6 at one point before fighting back to an 8-all-tie. Evans have one match point against at 8-9, but placed an excellent first serve for the winner and then was able to secure the next two points and the match win.

Evans and Overbay have been evenly matched for the past two seasons and have been key factors in the back-to-back district championships.

Evans and Overbay both move on and qualified for state. The two will compete in the individual state tournament at the Cooper Tennis Complex in Springfield tomorrow and Saturday.

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