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Plum doubles teams fare well at Section 3 tournament

| Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012, 9:29 p.m.
Plum Advance Leader
Plum junior Maria Campbell prepares to return a volley during a doubles match against Gateway on Sept. 12, 2012. Gary Bills | Plum Advance Leader

All four members of the Plum varsity tennis doubles teams are first-year varsity players.

The teams were in the mix at last week's Section 3-AAA doubles tournament at the Alpha Fitness and Tennis Center in Harmar, and they got a chance to put their talents on display.

Plum head coach Lori Senkewitz said both teams played well and impressed her as they made the quarterfinal round.

Senior Jessica Kenny and junior Maria Campbell engaged in a back-and-forth battle with Penn Hills' Gabby Hemp and Sarah Thrall in the first round.

The pro-set match — where the first team to capture 10 games and win by two is the winner — went to a tiebreaker at 10-10.

Kenny and Campbell had 9-8 and 10-9 leads, but Hemp and Thrall broke the Plum duo's serve both times in the match-clinching situations.

The tiebreaker was tied six times, as the teams traded point wins. Kenny and Campbell finally put the match away with an 8-6 victory in the tiebreaker.

“That was an amazing match,” Senkewitz said. “They were determined and didn't give up. I was impressed with how well they worked together and communicated.”

Kenny and Campbell then bowed to the Fox Chapel freshmen duo of Laurel Shymansky and Lacey Cohen.

Shymansky and Cohen went on to capture the section title with a 6-0, 6-0 win over Shady Side Academy freshmen Emma Perelman and Lindsay Miller.

Plum junior Danielle Davido and sophomore Ashley Alpino took care of business in the first round, as they beat Gateway sophomores Bridget Jacob and Kaylee Steimer, 10-3.

The veteran duo of Fox Chapel senior Maddy Hoffman and junior Isabella Verardi ended Davido and Alpino's run in the quarterfinals, 10-0.

In Section 3 team competition, Plum improved to 5-8 Monday with a 4-1 victory over Penn Hills.

Seniors Christen Kraemer and Julie Lester won in straight sets at No. 3 and No. 2 singles, respectively. Kraemer continues to battle back from a shoulder injury, and Senkewitz said she's been impressed with her fight to get back on the court and her play on the court.

Kraemer and Kenny teamed up for a victory at No. 2 doubles in last week's 5-0 win over McKeesport.

Also claiming victory in straight sets against Penn Hills were Kenny and Campbell at No. 1 doubles and Davido and Alpino at No. 2 doubles.

Plum was scheduled to wrap up the Section 3 slate Wednesday at home against Gateway. The match was to be contested past the deadline for this week's edition.

Michael Love is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388- 5825 or at mlove@tribweb.com.

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