Girls tennis takes first, sixth in another back-to-back outing

Amelia Knopp, Page Editor

The Manhattan High Varsity girls tennis team competed in back-to-back invitationals again this week. The girls took first place in Emporia on Monday and sixth place at the Kansas City Invitational on Tuesday, which was hosted at the Plaza Tennis Center in Kansas City.

No. 1 singles player junior Jillian Harkin was proud of the team’s impressive finishes against tough competition. 

“The Plaza tournament was definitely our hardest competition,” Harkin said. “There were really great teams from Kansas and Missouri, so we got to see new girls that we’ve never seen before and new playing styles. I think it was just a test of our endurance and our competitiveness.”

Individually, Harkin finished with a gold medal from Emporia and silver from Kansas City. Harkin swept her Emporia matches 3-0 and earned a record of 3-1 at the Plaza. 

No. 2 singles player junior Maura Wiens took fifth place in Emporia with a record of 3-1, followed by a 2-2 finish in Kansas City. 

At the No. 1 doubles spot, seniors Ava Bahr and Hannah Loub took bronze in Emporia (3-1) and went 0-3 at the Plaza. 

Juniors Erin Craft and Jessica Zhang, the No. 2 doubles duo, earned records of 3-1 on both days, receiving fifth place at Emporia and ninth place at the Plaza. 

“I think I need to work on definitely getting more consistent and communicating with my partner,” Zhang said. 

Competition at the Plaza included teams from Kansas and Missouri, allowing the girls to see how they stack up in the last matches before the postseason. 

“I just hope that the schedule that we have — since it gets a little tougher as we finish the season — gives the girls the confidence and the repetitions that they’re going to need here when it starts to count with League, Regionals, the opportunity to get to State,” head coach Tony Ingram said. 

Ingram said that Harkin and Wiens are displaying consistency, and the doubles teams have solidified and are improving each day. 

“We’re playing really good tennis, and a lot of times that’s my goal, to have the girls playing their best tennis come October,” Ingram said.