Hickey and Reys win doubles title

Sunday, October 26, 2003 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 1:22 a.m. CDT, Thursday, July 10, 2008

SPRINGFIELD — Not even a sudden change of venue could stop Kara Hickey and Whitney Reys’ bid for the Class 2 state doubles championship.

Hickey and Reys of Rock Bridge defeated Michelle Hall and Sydnee Mela of Lee’s Summit North 6-4, 6-1 in the finals Saturday.

After two picturesque days at the Cooper Tennis Complex, Saturday’s rain moved the tournament indoors at the complex shortly after Hickey and Reys beat Anna Beckett and Frannie McShane of St. Teresa’s Academy 6-0, 6-0 in the semifinals.

Hickey and Reys said they felt less pressure in the doubles tournament than Thursday’s team tournament.

“(The doubles title) is just the icing on the cake,” Hickey said. “You come to win for the team.”

Reys said: “It feels great (to win), but the team title felt better. The team is where it’s at.”

On Friday, Hickey and Reys beat Oakville’s Sarah Dalton and Stacey Goebel 6-0, 6-0 in the first round and defeated St. Joseph Central’s Jordan Lipira and Megan Varma 7-6 (8-6), 6-3 in the quarterfinals.

Bruin senior Stephanie Smarr lost to Susan Ma of Park Hill South 3-6, 4-6 in the semifinals of the singles consolation bracket.

She beat Francis Kalich of Poplar Bluff 6-2, 6-0 in the first round, lost to Meagan Brown of Kickapoo 1-6, 3-6 in the quarterfinals and defeated Kim O’Keefe of Hazelwood Central 6-4, 6-2 in the consolation quarterfinals Friday.

“I felt a little sad (after my last match), but it’s been fun,” Smarr said.

Smarr’s 114 career singles wins is a state record. Kristin Kornegay, Smarr’s former teammate, had the record with 104.

Bruins coach Ben Loeb said Smarr’s consistency and her ability to keep the ball in play were the biggest reasons she set the record. As a freshman, Smarr was talented but lacked self-confidence, Loeb said.

“I think she came in, as a freshman, rather naive,” he said. “In these four years, she became more self-confident and at ease with herself, and I think that enabled her to become better at handling adverse situations.”

Rock Bridge’s Ashley Miles and Karla Kruse lost their first-round match 7-5, 2-6, 4-6 to Elizabeth Hurley and Shannon Ward of St. Joseph’s Academy. In the consolation bracket, Miles and Kruse defeated Sheryl Horton and Jen Scott of Francis Howell North 6-2, 6-2 and Kickapoo’s Erinn Beckmann and Jennifer Kim 6-0, 6-3 on Friday.

Saturday’s rain delay came at an inopportune moment for Miles and Kruse. They were leading the first set of their consolation semifinal match 5-1 before officials suspended play. Miles and Kruse said the delay killed their momentum and allowed Lipira and Varma to regroup.

“They had a lot of time to rethink how they were playing,” Miles said. “(Lipira) was playing really bad, and if we would have stayed outside, I’m sure we would have won that set.”

Kaitlin Dunham of St. Teresa’s Academy won the Class 2 singles title, and Susan Sullivan of John Burroughs won the Class 1 singles event. Greer Mackie and Courtney Walther of Visitation Academy earned the Class 1 doubles championship.

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