With a complete sweep of Southwestern Conference rival Collinsville on Wednesday, Sept. 13, the O’Fallon girls tennis team has swung to a 10-2 start to the season.
The team followed up with a fourth-place finish over the weekend at the 16-team Bloomington Gold Invitational.
At Bloomington, the OTHS No. 1 doubles team of Miley Brunner and Kate Macaluso finished in first place with a perfect 4-0 record. At No. 2 doubles, Emiley Fritz and Abbey Byrnside finished in fifth place at 3-1. O’Fallon’s No. 3 doubles team of Zoie Howard and Ali Mueller had a 2-2 in tournament play.
In singles play at the tournament, Brunner finished in fourth place (2-2) at the No. 1 spot; Macaluso earned third place in the No. 2 spot (3-1); Fritz had a second-place effort (3-1) at No. 3; Byrnside and Howard both finished in fifth place (each 3-1) at No. 4 and 5, respectively; and and Mueller (3-1) finished in third place in the No. 6 position.
Belleville East won the Bloomington tournament. Other teams, in the order they finished, were Normal Community, Normal U-High, O’Fallon, Belleville West, St. Joseph’s (St. Louis), Ottawa, Morton, Normal West, Champaign Centennial, Bloomington, Peoria Notre Dame, Champaign Central, Springfield, Pekin and Mattoon
Champaign Centennial Invitational
O’Fallon got off to a good start to the season with a third-place finish at the Champaign Centennial Invitational on Aug. 19.
In Champaign, Brunner and Macaluso took home first-place honors with a 4-0 record in No. 1 doubles, and Byrnside took home fifth place with a 3-1 record at No. 2 singles.
As a team, O’Fallon totaled 16.5 points, which was good enough for third place in the 16-team tournament behind Belleville East (28) and Wheaton Warrenville South (23). Emiley Fritz was 2-2 at No. 1 singles, and at No. 2 doubles, Zoie Howard and Alisha Lester finished the tournament 1-2.
Other schools participating in the tournament, in the order they finished, were Lincoln Way East, Warren Township, Belleville West, Effingham St. Anthony, Chicago Latin, Hinsdale South, Champaign Centennial, Danville, Champaign Central, Teutopolis, Conant, Galesburg, and Urbana.
The only head-to-head blemishes for the team in its first dozen games were two setbacks in the Heather Bradshaw Invitational, which was hosted by Edwardsville High School Sept. 1 and 2.
“We had two teams in the varsity tournament — Team A (varsity) and Team B (JV),” said Thoman. “Team A finished in 10th place in the A Flight of the Edwardsville Tournament and was 2-2. There were 16 teams in the A Flight, 15 teams in the B Flight, and five teams in the C Flight. Team B finished in 13th place in the B Flight and was 2-2.”
In the tournament, Team A for OTHS lost to both Maine South and Incarnate Word by scores of 3-2, but was victorious over Springfield 5-0 and Carbondale 4-1.
Team B for OTHS finished all four of its games with scores of 3-2, earning victories over Effingham and Roxana, but falling to Marion and Mascoutah.
OTHS 9, Collinsville 0
At Collinsville, only one match went to three sets. At No 1. singles Brunner defeated Jennaka Cain, 6-1, 6-0. At No. 2 singles, Macaluso was victorious over Amy Burgess, 6-0, 6-1. At No. 3 singles Fritz won against Karalyn Mitchell, 6-0, 6-0. At No. 4 singles Byrnside defeated Lexi Ludgate 6-1, 6-1. It was Howard in No. 5 singles over Lindsey Taylor, 2-6, 6-1, 12-10, in the only three-set match of the afternoon. And at No. 6 singles, Ali Mueller defeated Ali Moore. 6-1,6-1.
In doubles at Collinsville for OTHS, Brunner and Macaluso defeated Cain/Burgess 6-1,6-0 in the No. 1 spot. In the No. 2 match, Fritz and Byrnside defeated Mitchell and Ludgate, 6-1,6-0. At No. 3 doubles, Howard and Mueller defeated Taylor and Moore, 6-0, 6-2.
On Saturday, Sept. 9, O’Fallon won its own quadrangular tournament, defeating Alton Marquette 5-0, Althoff 3-2, and Mount Vernon 5-0. Althoff finished second, Marquette was third, and Mount Vernon was fourth.
OTHS 9, Centralia 0
On Sept. 7, OTHS swept Centralia 9-0 in a home match.
In singles, Brunner defeated Michelle Lynch 6-0, 6-0. Macaluso defeated Maddie Capps, 6-0, 6-0. Fritz defeated Piper Marcum, 6-1, 6-0. Byrnside defeated Jarryn Jones, 6-2, 6-1. Howard defeated Tess Miley 6-0, 6-2, and Ali Mueller defeated Olivia Newcomb, 6-2, 6-0.
In doubles, it was Brunner and Macaluso winning over Capps and Marcum 6-0, 6-0. Fritz and Byrnside defeated Lynch and Jones, 6-3, 6-0, and Howard and Mueller won their match against Kirsten Altom and Alyssa Deomes 6-1, 6-0.
OTHS 9, Mascoutah 0
In another home match on Sept. 6, O’Fallon blanked Mascoutah 9-0.
In singles, Brunner defeated Anna Rosenstengel, 6-0, 6-1. Macaluso defeated Colleen Spehar, 6-2, 6-1. Fritz defeated Paige Engelage, 6-1, 6-1. Byrnside defeated Ella Mostoller, 6-4, 7-5. Howard defeated Anna Marison, 6-1, 6-1, and Mueller defeated Abby Spitler, 6-0, 6-0
In doubles, Brunner and Macaluso defeated Rosenstengel-Spehar, 6-0, 6-0. Fritz-Byrnside won against Engelage and Mostoller, 6-1, 6-1, and it was Howard and Mueller over Marison-Spitler, 6-2, 6-0.
O’Fallon 8, Highland 1
On Thursday, Aug. 31, the Pathers were victorious over the Bulldogs in their first road match of the season at Highland, 8-1. The Panthers only loss came at No. 5 singles, where Mia Walters defeated Howard, 6-2,6-1.
In the other singles matches, Brunner defeated Kirsten Plocher, 6-1,6-0 in the No. 1 spot. Down the line it was Macaluso over Fleming, 6-1, 6-1, at No. 2; Fritz over Kate Feldmann, 6-2, 6-1, at No. 3. Byrnside over Ariana Kampwerth, 6-1, 6-0, at No. 4; and Mueller over Ashley Basden, 7-5, 6-4, at No. 6.
In was a clean sweep for OTHS in doubles. Brunner and Macaluso defeated Pocher and Feldmann, 6-4, 6-0. Fritz and Byrnside defeated Fleming and Basden, 6-2, 6-1, and Howard and Mueller defeated Kampwerth and Walters, 7-5, 6-2.
OTHS 9, Granite City 0
O’Fallon opened the Southwestern Conference season on the road at Granite City on Aug. 30 and took down the Warriors 9-0.
In singles, Brunner defeated Kourtney Singleton, 6-1, 6-0. Macaluso defeated Maya Ware, 6-1, 6-0. Fritz defeated Olivia Brinker, 6-1, 6-0. Byrnside defeated Emma VanBuskirk, 6-0, 6-0. Howard defeated Kayla Bridick, 6-0, 6-1, and Alisha Lester defeated Jaedyn Black, 6-1, 6-0.
In doubles, Brunner and Macaluso defeated Ware and Bridick, 6-0, 6-0. Fritz and Byrnside won against Singleton and Sarah Schnefke, 6-1, 6-0, and Howard and Mueller were triumphant against VanBuskirk and Brinker 7-5, 6-2
To round out the regular season, O’Fallon will host Edwardsville on Sept. 26; go to Alton on Sept. 27; take on Althoff at home on Sept. 28; and finish the regular season against Belleville West at OTHS on Oct. 3.