LAPORTE | The efficiency with which the Carmel girls tennis team picked apart the Munster singles players on Saturday morning was eye-opening.
It was an all-too-familiar sight for Mustangs coach Bill Heuer.
Munster saw its season end to the Greyhounds for the second straight year with a 4-1 loss at the LaPorte Semistate at Kesling Park. The Mustangs finished their season with an 19-5 record.
“We knew that the odds were stacked against us (Saturday),” Heuer said. “We were hoping that we could take both of the doubles matches and then steal away one of the singles matches. It just wasn’t to be.”
Kasey Kulesa was the only Munster singles player who was able to win a game as the Greyhounds rolled by winning 36 out of 37 singles games. Both Jessica Rooth (No. 1 singles) and Melissa Tepperman (No. 2 singles) lost in straight sets.
“From the first point until they shook hands, (Carmel’s No. 1 singles) Bailey Padgett just played at a different level,” Heuer said. “I’m proud of Melissa and Kasey for battling today. Those singles players are three of the best in the state. They’d play No. 1 for just about any team in the state.”
The Mustangs were able to get a point when the No. 1 doubles team of Paige Heuer and Nikki Heiniger beat Linnea Peters and Amy Brentlinger 6-3, 6-3. Heuer and Heiniger will advance to the state individual tournament in two weeks.
“This is special to me because my career is coming to an end and I’m thrilled I’ll get to do it at state,” Paige said.
Paige Heuer is one of two seniors on the team along with No. 2 doubles member Mariana Rogers. The two shared a tender embrace after the match with Heuer doing her best to cheer up an emotional Rogers.
“I wish that we were all moving on,” Paige said. “Mariana is a great friend and I’m proud to have served as a captain with her this year.”
Coach Heuer was quietly pleased that his daughter Paige was moving on along with Heiniger, but he was more concerned with consoling the fallen Mustangs then thinking about state.
“We’ll celebrate that later on,” Heuer said. “The goal is always to take seven people to state. This is really tough right now, but it is a nice silver lining.”