Girls State Tennis Tournament

Homestead, Nicolet and Whitefish Bay competitors among favorites in Division 1 singles and doubles competitions at Nielsen Stadium in Madison.

A combination of experienced place winners and new faces will compete for titles at the WIAA girls state individual tennis tournament at Nielsen Stadium in Madison from Oct. 16-18.

Here are a few of the things to look out for as 56 qualifiers compete in Division 1 singles and 28 tandems square off in doubles. Division 2 will feature 28 individuals and the same number of doubles teams.

Division 1

Singles

Odds are that the champion will represent the Milwaukee metro area, and the heavy favorites would be competitors from the talent-laden Nicolet (11 qualifiers) or Waukesha South (eight) sectionals.

Mequon Homestead freshman Aly Coran (31-0) is the top seed, while Waukesha South sophomore Katy Allen (31-0) sits at No. 2. Allen captured fourth a year ago.

Jennifer Winston

Fond du Lac sophomore McKennah Edwards (28-2) is seeded third while Jennifer Winston of Nicolet is at No. 4 after entering last year's event as the sixth seed.

Rounding out the eight seeded performers are senior Brittany Skemp of Brookfield Central (29-8), sophomore Sophie Lillie of Whitefish Bay (17-8), junior Rachel Margolies (10-0) and freshman Karyn Guttormsen of Kenosha Bradford (26-2).

Others who could contend are freshman Carly Peck of Homestead (32-1) and junior Kristin Kurer of Port Washington (23-7), who placed sixth last season.

Doubles

Whitefish Bay's Haley Davidson is back for another shot at a title, but this year fellow senior Emily Mackay is her partner. Davidson and Emily Bostwick were seeded first in 2007 but finished second to the Brookfield Central duo of Rebecca Nelson and Kayley Carswell, who are both competing in singles this fall.

Davidson and Mackay (22-3) are seeded first, while Homestead seniors Aubree Schulz and Rebecca Wiener (26-3) sit at No. 2. Seniors Lauren Gryniewicz and Scarlet Hoy of Divine Savior Holy Angels (18-3) are the third seed, and senior Jennifer Smith and junior Brittany Watchmaker of Homestead (22-0) are seeded fourth.

The Nos. 5-8 seeded tandems are: junior Kayla Chessman and freshman Grace Davis of Neenah (10-0), seniors Krista Nelson and Laura Baensch of Waukesha West (10-3), seniors Katie Radler and Elizabeth Rice of DSHA (16-3) and senior Emily Chitko and sophomore Allie Chitko of Beaver Dam (15-1).

Division 2

Singles

Barring injury or a colossal upset, Big Foot/Williams Bay senior Caroline Starck (32-0) will become a three-time state champion.

Starck finished 35-3 in claiming the title as a sophomore and went 33-1 in repeating a year ago, defeating the next two seeded players in this week's competitions for the crown.

Bartlett and Lesko

Starck disposed of senior and third-seeded Rachel Vrabec of Appleton Xavier (6-1, 6-2) in the semifinals and then ousted rival Beth Ganser of Jefferson, another senior, 6-1, 6-0 in the finale.

Ganser enters this year's event at 24-3, while Vrabec is 24-1 and they should meet in the semis. The other seeded player is No. 4 Maria Koval (19-6), a sophomore at Green Bay Notre Dame.

Doubles

The top returning duo is junior Mary Catherine Faller and sophomore Katie Pott of Notre Dame (23-2), who captured fifth place last season. They are seeded second behind Manitowoc Roncalli juniors Elissa Halla and Natalie Foster (17-2).

The other seeded duos are the No. 3 team from University School, sophomore Lucy Bartlett and senior Annie Lesko (23-5); and the No. 4 tandem from Racine St. Catherine's, seniors Alison Paulson and Leslie Stauss (12-6).

For more information and the complete brackets, visit the WIAA web site.


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