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Franklin Regional's Perry wins second straight section singles title; Vertes takes second

| Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Doug Gulasy | Murrysville Star
Franklin Regional sophomore Natalia Perry warms up before a match against Norwin on Aug. 23, 2012, at Franklin Regional High School.
Aaron Loughner | For the Penn-Trafford Star
Penn-Trafford's Charlotte Vertes hits a shot during the Section 1-AAA singles tournament on Sept. 13, 2012, at Franklin Regional.

The 2013 Section 1-AAA singles tournament had the same ending as the 2012 version.

Franklin Regional sophomore Natalia Perry took home her second straight section singles title, defeating Penn-Trafford junior Charlotte Vertes in the final — also for the second consecutive year.

Hempfield's Madison DeBone took third and Norwin's Alexa Holleran finished fourth, the same places they earned last year.

Only one major thing changed at this year's tournament: Perry, who lost three games in the final to Vertes in 2012, didn't lose a single game in the two-day tournament. She won her first-round and quarterfinal matches by 10-0 scores, then beat Holleran in the semifinals and Vertes in the finals by 6-0, 6-0 scores.

“This year, I was really trying not to lose a game just to have the record,” Perry said. “So it's been exciting these past two days. It's really fun. It's a good experience to be out here.”

After finishing third at the WPIAL singles tournament last year, Perry added a drop shot and worked on her play at the net in the hopes of bringing home a district title.

“Out there, from the baseline, nobody misses,” she said. “So if you have a net game, it's an advantage for you because you can just get the point over faster. Otherwise, you'll be rallying forever.”

Vertes finished in second place for the third straight year. She beat Franklin Regional's Kurlya Yan, 10-1, in the first round and Norwin's Courtney O'Connell, 10-3, in the second round before outlasting DeBone, 6-4, 7-5, in the semifinals.

“We were just having points that were lasting forever,” Vertes said. “It just came down to who wanted it more and who had the stronger want for it. I'm lucky I got to pull it out.”

Perry, Vertes and DeBone all moved on to the WPIAL Class AAA singles tournament, which was scheduled for Wednesday at Norwin and Thursday at North Allegheny.

“I think I know more of what to expect (this) week,” Perry said. “I'm going in more prepared.”

Doug Gulasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-388-5830, via email at dgulasy@tribweb.com or via Twitter @dgulasy_Trib.

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