High school girls tennis: A big win for Cougars

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Staff report

CHINA GROVE — It wasn’t going well for a while.

Carson’s girls tennis team was down on five singles courts at one point.

But the Cougars (6-0, 4-0) came back. They beat South Iredell 7-2 on Tuesday in a match that took almost three hours.

There were five tiebreakers.

“It was close, much closer than it sounds,” winning coach Kayela Galloway said. “Three of our girls who lost their first set won the second set and then won a third-set tiebreaker.”

Carleigh Perry, who plays No. 2 singles, had the only relatively easy win for the Cougars. No. 4 Colbie Perry, No. 5 Alison Sloop and No. 6 Bree Whittington staged comebacks.

No. 3 singles was also hotly contested. Carson’s Riley Isley lost the first set, won the second set, and then lost a third-set tiebreaker.

At No. 1, Carson’s Lindsey Conrad lost to South Iredell’s Niyati Kandekar.

Conrad teamed with Carleigh Perry to win No. 1 doubles. Also winning in doubles for the Cougars were Isley/Sloop and Colbie Perry/Whittington.

The Vikings (4-2, 3-1) took their first North Piedmont Conference loss.

“It’s a huge win as far as the conference,” Galloway said. “Playing at home is a huge advantage in tennis. We had to win this one on our home turf. We still have to go to their place (June 4, the regular-season finale), but now we’re in pretty good shape.”

Carson has four seniors in its top six.

With no dual team state playoffs this year, a conference championship is an even more important team goal than usual.

Carson’s best bet as far as making it to the individual regionals is going to be the Conrad/Carleigh Perry doubles team.

“They’re good singles players, but their best chance is as a doubles team,” Galloway said. “They haven’t had any trouble with anyone so far.”

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West Rowan hasn’t won a dual-match yet, but No. 1 player Lacy Waggoner has victories against Kandekar and Conrad this season.

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