Miners tennis triumphs over judge
It’s not often that a Park City tennis match ends with the entire team engaging in an on-court celebration. Of course, it’s not often that Park City plays as bitter a rival as Judge Memorial.
To add to the drama, Park City not only beat the Bulldogs, but it came down to the No.2 doubles team’s final game.
"They [the Miners] were just tougher," said Park City head coach Lori McMahon.
No. 1 singles player, Ali McMahon and Tessa Wray, at No. 2 singles, led the way for the Miners winning in straight sets.
"They all fought hard. Once they got rolling they got into their match," McMahon said.
Mikelle Mancini of Judge beat Annika Karlson at No. 3 singles in straight sets. The No.1 doubles duo of Tori Sowul and Hilary Packham also struggled, losing to Judge’s Elissa Mulroy and Kylie West in straight sets. With the final deciding game on the line, both teams tuned into watch the four-game battle between Park City’s Kirsten Hardman and Lindsey Price and Judge’s Avery Noorda and Ellie Cutting. When the Miners finally triumphed in the end, the emotions started flowing.
McMahon also said that the match helped bring the remainder of the season into perspective. Judge is the only school standing in the way of a Region 10 championship and playing against difficult teams helps the Miners prepare for competition at the State tournament.
"We know what we need to work on patience, aggressiveness at the net," McMahon said.
The win will also boosts the team’s confidence as they head to the Ogden Invitational this weekend, which will be headlined by other state contenders like Ogden and Juan Diego.
"I think they are ready," McMahon said.
The girls were tested the day before in a non-league match against 4A powerhouse Murray. Park City narrowly lost 3-2.
"I think they are in the right mental state," McMahon said. ‘They learned that they really have to be aggressive."
McMahon’s biggest concern this weekend is just keeping the girls calm. Transitioning from the soft side of their region schedule to facing some of the most talented teams in the state has made the Miners a little nervous.
"We need to play point by point and not be so concerned about who’s on the other side of the net," McMahon said.
If the Miners fare well at Ogden, it should be a good indication of their prospects for winning the 3A state title. McMahon says as long as the girls stay healthy and continue to communicate they should be among the best.
"We’re trying to get it together," McMahon said. "We’re looking good and feeling good.
The Miners will play the finals of the Ogden Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 16. Competition starts at 9 a.m. at Ogden High School.
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The unemployment rate in Summit County in September rose slightly and the state upwardly revised the August figure, evidence job gains in the Park City-area have largely stalled.