WHEELERSBURG — As it turned out, the Wheelersburg High School girls tennis team’s regular season was in fact better by the dozen.
That’s because the Lady Pirates finished a perfect 12-0, winning four non-conference contests outside of their eight Southern Ohio Conference affairs.
That 12th and final regular-season victory became official on Wednesday, when Wheelersburg —with officially a 3-2 triumph over visiting and non-league Ironton — was declared the winner of the second doubles match against the Fighting Tigers.
The Ironton at Wheelersburg match actually took place a week ago Wednesday, but was tied at 2-2 when darkness forced the suspension of play in the third and final set of the second doubles tilt.
The two teams agreed to complete that match on Wednesday, as Elise Jackson and Emma Brinkman of the Lady Pirates played Lily Thomas and Kendall Pauley of the Fighting Tigers.
Last week, Jackson and Brinkman dropped the first set 7-6, but won the second set with ease at 6-1.
However, one of that Ironton twosome was ill and could not play on Wednesday, and thus Wheelersburg was officially the winner with the ruling of an Ironton withdrawal.
That doubles match, per Wheelersburg girls tennis coach Jodi Wright, will not be made up.
The 3-2 decision was Wheelersburg’s third such in those dozen ‘W’s, as the Lady Pirates —en route to winning the SOC title —defeated Notre Dame twice by that count.
With Wednesday of last week’s play, the Lady Pirates posted shutout victories at first doubles and first singles, as Ironton won at second and third singles in hard-fought but straight-sets bouts.
At first doubles, Maegan Jolly and Emily Janney blanked (6-0, 6-0) Maggie Hackworth and Holly Dutey, while Wheelersburg senior Maddie Gill did the same to Jayci Johnson at first singles.
For Gill, it was her 11th win at first singles this season.
At second singles, Lilly Zornes edged Maria Nolan by identical 7-6 and 7-6 scores — with 7-5 tiebreakers to decide each.
At third singles, Rachel Gillespie swept Serena Kataria 7-5 and 6-4.
The Lady Pirates — along with the other SOC schools of Notre Dame, Minford, Valley and Waverly — will compete in the annual league tournament next week on Tuesday (Sept. 29) and Wednesday (Sept. 30).
Those matches will take place at Shawnee State University’s tennis complex.
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