Girls tennis: York edges Libertyville for title at Buffalo Grove

  • Cary-Grove first doubles player Katellyn O'Malley returns the ball during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      Cary-Grove first doubles player Katellyn O'Malley returns the ball during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Buffalo Grove first singles player Maya Belarussiki tracks the ball during a match against York during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      Buffalo Grove first singles player Maya Belarussiki tracks the ball during a match against York during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Hersey's first singles player Audrey Zagorski returns the ball during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      Hersey's first singles player Audrey Zagorski returns the ball during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Cary-Grove's Maggie Groos gets to the ball as she and first doubles partner Katelyn O'Malley play Buffalo Grove during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      Cary-Grove's Maggie Groos gets to the ball as she and first doubles partner Katelyn O'Malley play Buffalo Grove during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Cary-Grove's Katelyn O'Malley, right, hands the ball to doubles partner Maggie Groos during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      Cary-Grove's Katelyn O'Malley, right, hands the ball to doubles partner Maggie Groos during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Cary-Grove first singles plaer Annabella Gaffaney returns the ball in a match against Hersey during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      Cary-Grove first singles plaer Annabella Gaffaney returns the ball in a match against Hersey during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • York first singles player Lizzie Isyanov returns the ball during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      York first singles player Lizzie Isyanov returns the ball during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • York first singles player Lizzie Isyanov serves during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      York first singles player Lizzie Isyanov serves during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Buffalo Grove's Bella Whippo returns the ball during doubles play at the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      Buffalo Grove's Bella Whippo returns the ball during doubles play at the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Buffalo Grove first doubles player Val Kononchik plays the ball at the net during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday.

      Buffalo Grove first doubles player Val Kononchik plays the ball at the net during the Buffalo Grove tennis invite Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Buffalo Grove doubles players Bella Shippo, left, and Val Kononchik celebrate a point.

      Buffalo Grove doubles players Bella Shippo, left, and Val Kononchik celebrate a point. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

 
By Bill McLean
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 9/12/2022 11:24 AM

York's girls tennis team showed up at Saturday's Buffalo Grove invite and a "So You Think You Can Dance" competition vs. nobody broke out.

The Dukes had some time to kill between matches at the eight-hour, eight-team event and chose to boogie together in what appeared to be a semi-choreographed performance in the comfort of shade in steamy conditions.

 

"Oh, that," Dukes coach Courtney Bison said near a bank of BG Bison courts. "That's their way of lifting everybody up."

Her netters proved they can shimmy to tennis wins, too. York edged Libertyville 4-3 in the final behind an impressive win from sophomore and No. 1 singles standout Lizzie Isyanov and a pair of taut doubles triumphs.

Isyanov (10-0) topped Libertyville senior Maggie Forkner -- sixth in singles at the Class 2A state tournament last fall -- in an 8-4 pro set. The match was a highly competitive battle that looked and sounded like a state quarterfinal match.

The gifted baseliners cracked an array of sharp groundstrokes all over the deep ends of the court, turning entertaining rallies into mini track meets. Isyanov notched the first of her four service breaks to go up 3-1, got broken in the ninth game but retained a lead at 5-4, and then closed out the match by taking 3 straight games.

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"I'm trying to step in more on my groundstrokes, to finish points more quickly, instead of relying on my consistency," Isyanov said after avenging a 6-3, 6-4 loss to Forkner in a consolation-round quarterfinal at state last fall. "There were some stressful moments out there; Maggie played very well."

Forkner was coming off a recent 6-2, 6-2 win over reigning Class 2A state singles runner-up Autumn Rabjohns of Lake Forest.

York junior Clare Hewitt won 8-1 at No. 3 singles in the final, and the combos of Sasha Neidigh/Josie Coan and Bella Bjerkan/Sylvia Eastman earned 8-5 victories at Nos. 2 and 3 doubles, respectively.

Libertyville sophomore Lena Dogadalski -- one of the strongest No. 2 singles players in the state, rackets down -- downed York freshman Sophia Filip 8-3.

"Stay aggressive," Dogadalski said of her game plan. "And I kept myself hyped up."

Libertyville's other wins in the final came from Hadley Warren/Taya Breslow (No. 1 doubles) and Dakota Olson/Isabel Tepper (No. 4 doubles).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Maine South swept the singles matches in its 6-1 defeat of Buffalo Grove in the dual for third place. The Hawks' singles winners were Amelia Stanek (No. 1), Eva Zaskowski (No. 2) and Anna Jeludeva (No. 3). Stanek/Zaskowski then won at No. 1 doubles, as Jeludeva teamed up with Madeline Pankratz for a triumph at No. 2 doubles and Charlotte Hartung/Kaitlyn Brown got the 'W' at No. 3.

"Resiliency. We showed a lot of that today," Maine South coach Jerry Smith said. "I liked today's college-like format, players getting to play singles and doubles."

BG's Kathryn Benjamin/Sasha Bogomol won 8-5 at No. 4 doubles.

"My hope, with a modified college format, was to stage a festival atmosphere today," BG coach Mark MacDonald said. "Players got to cheer for their teammates more than they're able to do at duals and other invites. Some players hit or drilled on open courts while waiting for their next match.

"Coaches told me they liked the idea because it was such a departure from a typical high school invite."

Warren took fifth. Blue Devils coach Vince DeSecki received admirable efforts from doubles players Kaija Johnson, Shannon Mahoney, Peyton Mueller and Ellie Kreamer; and singles players Anastasia Radovic and Kamila Dobija.

"A solid day overall," DeSecki said.

Hersey, Cary-Grove and Lake Zurich also competed Saturday.

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