Lady Coaler tennis battles at Sectional

    The Coal City varsity girls tennis team headed to LaSalle-Peru to compete in the IHSA 1A Sectional.
    The Lady Coalers were one of 10 teams in the sectional, as other teams included LaSalle-Peru, Mendota, Morris, Ottawa, St. Bede, Princeton, Sterling, Sterling Newman and Streator.
    With St. Bede not competing, the field was cut to nine teams, as the Lady Coalers wound up claiming sixth in the field as a team.
    Coal City finished with eight team points, as they were behind the host team, LaSalle-Peru with 12.
    Ottawa took the top spot with 21 points, followed by Sterling Newman in second (20) and Sterling High School in third (19).
    “We played really well, even at Sectional,” said head coach Matt Leman. “Our goal at the beginning of the season was to go high into the Sectional. Unfortunately, that was before the Sectional drawing, and we got Ottawa, who is a really good team. “
    As individuals, the doubles team of Sarah Moore and Leslie Youskevtch picked up one win on the weekend. They defeated Sterling’s doubles team in three sets, winning the second and third, 6-2, 6-1. They fought back after dropping the first, 7-5.
    “They drew the Ottawa team in the second round, and they played great. I was proud of them,” Leman added.
    The other doubles team of Jessie Hanley and Abbey Gernenz fell to Sterling Newman in the opening round in two sets.
    In singles action, Kiara Abbott was handed a bye in the first round, and defeated Mendota’s Grace Brandner in the second round by two sets.
    She wound up losing the next one to Sterling’s Katelyn Grell in two.
    Other singles player, Natalie Schoeneck also picked up one win in the Sectional, as she defeated St. Bede’s Emily Szczepaniak in the first round.
    Schoeneck lost her second game to LaSalle-Peru’s Clara Ferrari in two sets.
    The Lady Coalers finish the year with an overall record of 14-6.
    “It was a great season for a team effort,” Leman added. “It was a great season, and all my girls had winning records. They played well at Sectional, but we drew some tough teams and it didn’t go our way.”