High school tennis: Eaton sisters, both state champs, team up to win sectional doubles title

With three state tennis titles between them, sisters Macy and Mallory Hitchcock know all about expectations.

“Everyone at school expects us to win,” Mallory said. “And that is kind of a lot of pressure.”

The Eaton sisters are playing doubles together this year and hoping that less stress nets them continued success. The Eagles moved one step closer to a return trip to the state tournament as they clinched the Division II girls sectional doubles title at Centerville High School Wednesday with a 6-0, 6-2 win over Alter’s Maggie Shope and Annie Schaefer.

Macy – the two-time defending D-II singles champion – is thrilled to be teaming up with her little sister in her final high school season.

“The first year I won state it was really exciting and super new and last year I feel like I definitely proved myself,” Macy said. “But playing singles is really stressful and it’s my senior year, so to be able to play doubles and have someone else to rely on is really nice.”

When your teammate is a defending D-II doubles champion and your sister, all the better.

“We have all the same coaches, and we know how each other thinks,” Mallory said. “We play well together.”

The sectional champions lost only four games in the entire two-day sectional tournament and will now be a top seed at the Southwest District Tournament that gets underway next Thursday at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason.

* Rookie success: Miami Valley School freshman Kennedi Washington backed up her sectional top seeding with a D-II singles championship title Wednesday. Washington topped Chaminade Julienne freshman Paige Harsman, 6-0, 6-0, losing only three games in her tournament run.

It all came down to training for Washington who regularly hits with players from the University of Northwestern Ohio.

“Playing with opponents who are better than me makes me a better player,” she said.

* Spot-on seedings: The D-I sectional singles and doubles champions started on top and finished the same way. The defending state champion doubles team of Caroline Hinshaw and Clara Owen, of Centerville, sped to a 6-0, 6-1 win over Springboro’s Amaya Hulbert and Sofia Tomlin to earn an identical No. 1 seeding for the upcoming district tournament. Top-seeded Bellbrook junior Maya Brink topped second-seeded Miamisburg freshman Sophie Jovanov, 6-3, 6-2 to claim the D-I sectional singles title.

* Upset specials: Not all the seeded teams made it through the sectional tournament unscathed. The unseeded Springboro doubles team of Anna Bailey and Hannah Hurlburt are district bound after beating Beavercreek’s fourth-seeded Kenna Ruggles and Victoria Contreras Tuesday and adding a win over Bellbrook to secure a district berth. Chaminade Julienne’s Mollie Juniewicz and Olivia Parisi edged out fourth-seeded Alana Baker and Chelsea Hoskins, of Alter, in three hard-fought sets to send the unseeded Eagles to the D-II district tournament.

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