Knouses net state doubles title

May 29, 1994|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,Sun Staff Writer

Centennial senior Becky Knouse finally enjoyed the sweet smell of success yesterday, coming away with a championship, or at least half of one, in the 20th annual state tennis tournament at Essex Community College.

This time Knouse and her sister Stephanie, a junior, were really tested only once in blasting their way through the girls doubles draw. They whipped Tracy Koenig-Jennifer Ungerer of South Hagerstown in the final, 6-0, 6-1.

The pair had a tough semifinal, turning back Nora Humphrey-Amanda Shaw of Whitman, 6-2, 4-6, 6-1. The sisters lost only eight games in three other matches.

Centennial got another pair of winners when senior Susan Green and junior Michelle Brown (both in a state tournament for the first time), took the consolation with a 6-4, 6-4 triumph over Humphrey-Shaw.

The two doubles teams -- the Knouses won county and regional titles, beating Green-Brown in both finals -- helped Centennial win its fifth straight Howard County team title this spring, and the eighth in coach Bill Shook's 11-year tenure.

"We place a lot of emphasis on our players down the line," Shook said. "The 5-6-7 people are taught to be as tough as the better ones."

Of the other county entries, David Mitchell of Mount Hebron in boys singles and Tracy Brown of Glenelg and Keely Alexander of Hammond in girls singles were the only ones to make it past the first round, and all lost in the second.

Meghan Cornwall, an Annapolis sophomore, outlasted German exchange student Britta Adolf of Severna Park, 6-7, 7-6, 6-3, in the girls singles final.

Cornwall pulled ahead in the third set, as she had success in moving her opponent from side to side.

"We were both really tired," said Cornwall of the three-hour match that eventually saw her beat Adolf, who lives near Frankfort, for the fifth time without a loss this season.

The third-seeded Cornwall was the only non-No. 1 to claim a title, as the favorites prevailed in four other divisions.

Dale Cathell (24-0), a Stephen Decatur senior, got a prize that escaped him a year ago, when he won the boys singles, beating Quince Orchard freshman Derrick Nguyen, 6-1, 6-2.

A year ago, he sustained his only loss of the season in the championship match when Hyon Yoo, from Wheaton, stopped him, 6-2, 6-4.

Senior-junior combinations won the other two titles. Matt Brown-Larry Chou of Churchill took the boys doubles, 6-2, 7-6 (9-7) over brothers Mark and Matt Hanna of South River. The Quince Orchard pair of senior Alex Chi and junior Negeen Pegahi downed Chad Schneider-Nealy Harris of Arundel, 6-1, 5-7, 6-4, but Schneider could have been forgiven for tiring in the stretch.

Between his morning semifinal match and the final, he took time out to be on hand for his graduation ceremonies at UMBC.

Jamie Margolies of Pikesville was the only Baltimore County entry to reach the semifinals. In girls singles, she lost in the semifinals to Cornwall, then thwarted Teresa Whiteside of Springbrook, 6-1, 3-6, 6-2.

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