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New blends with old for opening success

April 6, 2011
By ROSS THEDE - T-R Sports Editor ( , Times-Republican

First-year head girls' tennis coach Dennis Paul had perhaps his most glaring question answered in Marshalltown's season opener on Tuesday night.

Every Bobcat new to the varsity lineup won either an individual match or as part of a doubles team, helping Marshalltown to a 7-4 victory over visiting Newton at the MHS Tennis Courts.

Marshalltown jumped out to a 4-2 lead after singles play, and a come-from-behind doubles triumph by returning varsity regulars Phoebe Ryan and Katie Allison at the top spot eventually clinched the dual for the Bobcats.

Article Photos

Marshalltown senior Phoebe Ryan makes a backhand return during the No. 1 doubles match against Newton Tuesday at the MHS courts. Ryan and Katie Allison won in three sets to clinch the dual meet for the Bobcats.

Rachel Faircloth at No. 4 and Sydney Hunt at No. 6 singles both won in straight sets in their first varsity matches, and the No. 4 doubles combination of juniors Kelsey Forrest and Theresa Miller helped boost the Bobcats to a 5-3 lead with three doubles matches still in action.

Ryan and Allison, in their first varsity pairing, rallied from a 6-2 loss in the first set by taking the second set 6-1 and controlling the third-set tiebreaker, 10-3. Both were winners in singles play, too.

Varsity newcomers Maggie Kelehan and Megan Rachuy, both sophomores, also won their debut at No. 5 doubles, 6-2, 7-6.

"It was good to start the season off with a win," said Coach Paul. "We had six new varsity players and they all got a win at either singles or doubles, and we got some big wins by returning varsity players at singles and doubles for Phoebe Ryan and Katie Allison."

"I'm really proud of our six girls who are new to varsity," Paul added.

Marshalltown (1-0) returns to the nets on Friday at the Boone Invitational, and another road date awaits the Bobcats on April 14 at Indianola.



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