Lake Norman & Mooresville

Two area doubles teams win titles at NCHSAA state championships

Lake Norman Charter’s Hannah Archer and Community School of Davidson’s Courtney Mudge already have plenty of singles titles in their trophy cases.

Now the two Lake Norman-area tennis players will need to make room for another trophy, this one in doubles.

Archer and Mudge were both part of winning doubles teams during the N.C. High School Athletic Association state championships, held Oct. 24-25.

Archer and her younger sister, Olivia, won the 2A state doubles title at the Cary Tennis Center, while Mudge teamed with sophomore Marisa Deininger to take the 1A state doubles title, also in Cary.

The Archers had a dominating run en route to winning Lake Norman Charter’s second state individual title in girls’ tennis and its first in doubles. They did not lose a game in their first three matches and knocked off the sister team of Lydia and Sara Yuan of N.C. School of Science and Math 6-1, 6-1 in the championship match.

“Even thought the score didn’t say so, the final was still pretty difficult,” said Hannah Archer, who won the 1A state singles title in 2012, her freshman year at Lake Norman Charter. “Those girls were very good, and each game was pretty tight.”

Said Olivia Archer: “We didn’t get to play doubles together much, but the high school team allowed us to play together a lot more. We grew a lot stronger as a pair, and that’s what helped us make the decision (to go for the state doubles title).”

Mudge and Deininger – who faced each other for the 1A state singles title last year, won by Mudge – had an equally-impressive run through the 1A doubles bracket.

They won all three of their matches in straight sets, including a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Meghan Hedgepeth and Brooke Herlocker of Gray Stone Day in the final to give Community School of Davidson its second NCHSAA title in girls’ tennis.

“Our final was pretty hard, harder than we expected,” said Mudge, who also won the 1A Western Regional with Deininger. “We had played them before, and beat them a little bit easier than we did at states. They came out pretty strong, but we had a good match and were able to pull it out.”

Herlocker had been a part of Gray Stone Day’s past two 1A state doubles title-winning teams, teaming with Libby Fowler in 2012 and 2013.

“We’re pretty happy,” Deininger said. “When we played them in the regionals, they were missing a lot and we were having one of the best matches we’ve ever played. But they played so much better (in the state finals). We had a tough time getting used to things, but the way we played we were able to pull it out.”

Other area players in the NCHSAA state championships were:

• Lake Norman freshman Lauren Gish advanced to the semifinals of the 4A singles bracket before losing her first match of the season. Hough’s Gabby Moore was eliminated in the first round.

Gish, the 4A West Regional champion, lost to Winston-Salem Reynolds’ Peyton Pesavento 6-2, 6-2 in the semifinals, held at Raleigh’s Millbrook Exchange Park.

Pesavento had beaten Moore, the MECKA 4A tournament champ, 6-0, 6-1 in the opening round.

• Lake Norman Charter’s Charanya Uppalapati won her opening-round match in the 2A singles tournament while teammate Tiffany Onia lost in the first round.

Uppalapati defeated North Surry’s Jane Blackburn 6-4, 7-6 (7-1) in the first round, but lost to Carrboro’s Jessica Ille in the quarterfinals 6-0, 6-2.

Onia lost to eventual state champion Kayla Honeycutt of Salisbury in the first round 6-0, 6-0.

• Lake Norman Charter’s second doubles team of Lauren Bush and Lauren Loveless won its opening-round match at the 2A state championships but lost in the quarterfinals.

Bush and Loveless opened with a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Emerson Hayes and Maggie Lancaster of Lexington, but would lose to the Yuan sisters in the quarterfinals 6-3, 7-5.

• Pine Lake Prep’s Lexi Yakoobian and Sierra Lunsford made it to the semifinals of the 1A doubles tournament before being eliminated.

Yakoobian and Lunsford opened with a 0-6, 6-4, 6-3 win over Whiteville’s Margaret High and Chase Barnhill, but lost to Hedgepeth and Herlocker 6-0, 6-3 in the semis.

• Eliza Robinson of Community School of Davidson lost in the opening round of the 1A singles tournament in three sets to Franklin Academy’s Casey Langer, 2-6, 6-3, 6-3.