PROSPERITY — The Mid-Carolina girl’s tennis team will face off in a final match up against Bishop England in Cayce on Saturday for the state championship in Region AAA after moving up from Region AA this year.
“The conference we moved into is very strong,” said tennis coach Kenny Sanders. “Out of the 15 teams that made it to the playoffs and Upstate, the final four that were standing were all in the same region. It was us, Clinton, Woodruff and Chapman, so we ended up playing some of the teams three times and others just twice.
“It’s hard enough beating a team twice, but three times is even tougher,” said Sanders. “The girls have had a lot of off-season practice, a lot of clinics and stuff like that to get them ready. They’ve put in a lot of hard work and dedication.”
Going into Saturday’s game, Sanders said the girls are continuing to practice leading up to the game, holding practice Friday, squeezing in extra hitting time Saturday morning before the team hits the road for the noon match.
“We’re just trying to keep the girls’ confidence up and really just motivating them,” Sanders said. “They’re playing for a state championship, so they probably don’t need much more motivation. We’re just trying to do stuff every day to keep that hand-eye coordination sharp so we’ll be ready for Bishop England tomorrow.”
Bishop England is going for six in a row in Saturday’s match up. The Rebels played Bishop England in 2013 for the state title, but lost.
Sanders also said that Elise Mills will be one to watch out for in Saturday’s match.
“Elise Mills is our 2015 Single State Champion, and she recently played in a national tournament in Hilton Head this past weekend and won a lot of matches. She is definitely leading the pack for us playing number one,” Sanders said. “I mean, she hasn’t lost a match in three years as far as team tennis goes.”
This is the team’s second trip to the state championships and Sanders said with Bishop England going for six wins in a row, it’s going to be an uphill battle.
“I told the girls in 2013 when we got off the bus ‘Girls, I’ve got two questions for you. Whether we come back here or not depends on how you answer these questions. You can either say tennis season is over or tennis practice has just started.’ So, here we are getting to play for another championship getting prepared for a second chance and we hope this time it is in our favor,” Sanders said.
Reach Kelly Duncan at 803-768-3123 ext. 1868 or on Twitter @TheNBOnews.