N. Carroll hangs on to capture doubles title

Foster, Easter triumph

Broadneck's Hellier again misses on singles crown

May 30, 1999|By Mark Hoeflich | Mark Hoeflich,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Brooke Foster and Heather Easter of North Carroll breathed a collective sigh of relief yesterday at the state tennis championships.

Having not played a three-set match all season, and down two games to Walter Johnson's Kim Sperling and Bridget Ruttkay in the last set of the girls doubles finals, the Panthers' duo collected themselves in time to carve out a 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 win for the state title at Essex Community College.

North Carroll was the only Baltimore-area school to earn a state championship. Montgomery County players won the singles and boys doubles titles, and a Dorchester County pair won mixed doubles.

In by far their season's toughest match, Foster and Brooke also proved something to themselves. "We just wanted it," said Easter.

Foster and Easter effectively took control of the match by winning the critical eighth game of the third set, which was stopped momentarily as Sperling and Ruttkay questioned a ball that was called out. Easter followed with an ace and Foster a net winner that put them ahead, 5-3. Sperling held serve for 5-4 before North Carroll fought off two break points to win.

"When they argued the call, it just got us fired up a little bit," Easter said.

Broadneck's Jennifer Hellier ran into a familiar opponent in the girls singles final and came up short for the second straight year, losing to Wooten's Anna Goldstein, 6-3, 6-3. They have played in tournaments throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.

Yesterday's match featured several long rallies, and by the middle of the second set, both players were fighting the heat.

"I got a little winded and just tried to take extra time between points and changeovers," said Hellier, a senior in her fourth state tournament.

Goldstein pressured Hellier by continuously winning the key games, including the sixth game of the second set. Goldstein broke Hellier for the second time for a 4-2 lead.

"I tried not to rush points and just take them one at a time," Goldstein said. "I took more chances, because I knew she likes to play the points out more."

Hellier's four unforced errors over the last two games helped Goldstein close out the match.

Churchill's Chris Brown took the boys singles final from Frederick's Babak Alidosti, 6-2, 6-1.

Other winners: Daniel Min and Russell Bryan of Springbrook took the boys doubles title in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4; and Brooke Fleetwood and Shan Shariff, from Cambridge-South Dorchester, won the mixed doubles championship.

Arundel's Ann Buschman and Chris Beegle defeated Laura Townsend and Matt Kapelancyzk of Bel Air, in the mixed doubles consolation finals.

Severna Park's Andrew Porter retired in his boys singles consolation match with Northwest's Brett Johnson.

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