Cats advance to title match; Jeeps fall short

Photos by Daniel Vasta/The Herald
Jasper's Suchi Bandaru, left, and Josie Yarbrough high-five each other during Tuesday's tennis regional semifinal in Jasper. The Wildcats defeated Bloomfield 3-2 in a close match to advance to tonight's regional championship against Washington. For more photos from Tuesday's regional, click here.


JASPER — Tuesday night’s girls tennis regional at the Ed Yarbrough Tennis Complex saw two matches come down to the wire.

While Jasper and Northeast Dubois both had matches that were decided by just one match, the emotion experienced was different on both sides.

The Wildcats cheered and celebrated as Emma Reutepohler’s 6-1, 6-0 victory at No. 3 singles over Bloomfield clinched a regional championship appearance. However, there were some tears on the Northeast Dubois side as the Jeeps fell 3-2 to Washington after Delaney Rasche and Olivia Schroering fell short in a three-set heartbreaker 6-2, 3-6, 4-6.

While Reutepohler admits that she sometimes catches herself looking at her teammates scores while she’s playing, she mostly tries to keep her attention on her own match.

“I try to just focus on my match because I know sometimes it’s come down (to my match),” Reutepohler said. “I’ve just tried to concentrate on myself so I can focus better.

Jasper’s other two wins came at No. 1 doubles as Suchi Bandaru and Josie Yarbrough defeated Maizy Gilliland and Malea Toon 6-1, 6-1 and at No. 2 doubles where Hadley Meyer and Delaney Wigand defeated Nicole Kilzer and Lucia Vicent 6-0, 6-4.

While the Wildcats have made many different lineup changes as the year has gone on, Reutepohler has remained rather constant at the No. 3 singles spot. Jasper head coach Scott Yarbrough believes this has paid off immensely toward her success.

“No matter what lineup, she’s been able to go out there and grow in that spot,” Yarbrough said. “She’s known this whole year that’s where she’s going to be. From that standpoint, it gives her consistency and she has a nice confident right now with how she’s been hitting the ball.”

The Wildcats have had back-to-back close matches as they narrowly defeated Pike Central 3-2 in the sectional championship and once again had a 3-2 victory in the regional semifinal against Bloomfield.

Jasper is well-aware they’ll have a tough matchup this afternoon against the Washington Hatchets. While it was a 4-1 victory for the Cats during the regular season, the team is well aware that anything can happen during tournament time.

“I think we just need to be confident in ourselves, that’s what I always tell my teammate Priyal (Sharma),” Reutepohler said. “I always tell her to be confident and focus on her own game, I think confidence is the biggest key.”

Yarbrough added: “Based off what I’ve seen, their two strongest points are No. 2 and No. 3 singles players but they have a nice No. 1 player as well and both doubles teams are solid. They’re strong enough to knock us off and they’re well aware of that, I just want us to come in and play well. If you lose, you lose but I want us to come out and play strong.”

While the Northeast Dubois’ girls tennis season came to an end at the hands (or rackets) of the Hatchets on Tuesday, there are plenty of things to be happy about in terms of the whole season.

Northeast Dubois' Chloe Terwiske returns the ball during Tuesday's tennis regional semifinal in Jasper. While the Jeeps were defeated by Washington 3-2, Terwiske was victorious in her No. 1 singles match which means she'll advance to the regional round of the individual singles tournament tonight at Jasper. For more photos from Tuesday's regional, click here.

The Jeeps won their first sectional championship since 2013, they notched an undefeated regular season, a Blue Chip conference championship and with her 6-2, 6-4 victory at No. 1 singles, Chloe Terwiske will advance to the individual tournament’s regional round. The No. 1 doubles team of Paige Knies and Alexis Stafford were also victorious 6-2, 6-2.

“These girls did what we sent out to do and these were bonus matches (tonight),” head coach Tina Terwiske said. “We had our chances but they slipped way from us. However, it’s water under the bridge at this point — we’ll move forward.”

The Jeeps will retain all three singles players as well as Schroering and Stafford. While Northeast Dubois will miss their graduating seniors, Rasche and Knies, they believe they have the ability to regroup and make another strong run next season.

“We might have to make some lineup changes strength wise but we look forward to what we have back,” Terwiske said.

Raiders fall in individual match

The Southridge No. 1 doubles tandem of Audra Hochgesang and Jordan Biehl became known as the “Comeback Kids” throughout the season and it almost appeared they had another rally in them.

After falling to Vincennes Rivet’s Macee Hamilton and Magdelyn Early 6-2 in the first set, the Raider duo rallied to win the second set 6-2 and force a third set.

Hochgesang and Biehl had some long rallies in the third and final set but the Patriots No. 1 doubles tandem pulled away to win the third set 6-2 and advance to the next round of the individual tournament.

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