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Jason Schmitt is the editor of, the high school sports website for The Oakland Press. He has served as the sports editor for a number of newspapers, including the Daily Tribune in Royal Oak and the Macomb Daily in Mount Clemens. In his time in the industry, he has covered every high school sport and has served a a beat writer for boys and girls soccer, boys and girls tennis, hockey, wrestling, bowling and cross country.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Finally, a break in the weather for some good tennis

I guess the rain had to stop at some point. And because of it we're in for some great competition this week. There are generally a few big matches I like to see each year. They generally pit the best against the best.
  • Today Marian travels to Seaholm in a battle of two Division 2 state powers. It'll be a prelude to the regional tournament in a couple weeks, as well as the state tournament, where I believe the two teams - along with Grand Rapids Forest Hills Northern - will again battle it out, that time for a state title. I will try to live tweet from the match @JasonESchmitt.
  • Tomorrow, I'll be heading over to Cranbrook where the Cranes will take on Clarkston in a battle of the state's top-ranked Division 3 and 1 teams. No one will touch the Cranes this year, but this match could be intriguing at a few different flights. Can't wait to see 1-3 singles (Alex Najarian vs. Lexi Baylis, Anna Short vs. Isabella Spindler and Allison Motea vs. Dana Olsen) as well as No. 1 doubles (Alissa Rowens-Meg Phyle vs. Paige Olsen-Alex Whall). Again, I'll try to live tweet from that match, too.
  • Andover will take on Country Day on Wednesday, as well. That should be a good one. The Yellowjackets' singles lineup has played well this year, while Andover's doubles have been rock solid. Expect a 4-4 type match here.
  •  UPDATED: This weekend there will be a couple of big tournaments. Over at Holly, the Bronchos will host the Red & White Holly Invite. Some of the best teams in the state will be there, including Clarkston (#1 D-1), Port Huron Northern (#2 - D1), Ann Arbor Huron (#4 - D1), Mercy (#5 - D1), Marian (#5 - D2), Grand Blanc, North Farmington and the hosts.
  • A previously-scheduled quad involving Country Day and Cranbrook will take on a different look. The two teams will NOT see each other, but will both face Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern. We'll have to wait 'til the regional to see the Cranes and Yellowjackets square off.
  • Also this weekend, Seaholm will be traveling over to the west side of the state to take part in the Portage Central quad, which includes the ninth-ranked hosts, the top-ranked Maples and No. 2 Grand Rapids Forest Hills Northern, along with Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central.
The Holly tournament is the second in two weeks the school has hosted. On Friday, it hosted a quad tournament, which Clarkston beat out Port Huron Northern and Traverse City Central for the title, followed by Holly. It was one of a handful of tournaments this past weekend:
  • Academy of the Sacred Heart won five flight championships and cruised to the title at the NorthPointe Christian Invite on Saturday. The Gazelles showed why their depth has them ranked No. 1 in Division 4 and will be a big reason why their favored to win a second-straight state title in a few weeks. Teresa Walawender and Tate Lehmann won 3-4 singles titles, while Heidi Lemon-Sarah Spangler, Hannah Gerard-Kendall Lehmann and Gretchen Lemon-Elia Wilson won 2-3-4 doubles titles.
  • Port Huron Northern and Ann Arbor Huron shared the Huron Invitational title on Saturday, both scoring 15 team points. Clarkston and Mercy both had 14 points to tie for third, along with Traverse City Central. Troy was sixth with nine, followed by Midland Dow and Saline. Spindler and Dana Olsen won singles titles for Clarkston, as did Paige Olsen and Whall at 1-dubs. Mercy's Julie Flannigan and Sarah Hinrichs won the 4-doubles title. In an important match at #1 singles, Saline's Mary Hanna beat Clarkston's Baylis in three sets in on semifinal. It was an important matchup that could have big implications for seeding purposes at the Division 1 state finals. Those two, along with defending state champion Davina Nguyen, are expected to battle it out for the title.
  • Notre Dame Prep beat out Armada to win the Goodrich Invitational. Kayla Stencel, Erin Moncrief, Hannah Preuss all won singles titles, while Annie and Julie Boniface, Gabby Bering and Maddie Riley, and Hannah Dinardo and Allison Kavanagh won in doubles.

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