SYRACUSE — It’s not like these two teams aren’t used to this by now.
Concord, which has played a total of one complete varsity match entering Tuesday evening and Wawasee, which has just four matches under its belt, would have a rain delay. As rain halted play for about 20 minutes Tuesday, it let up just enough for Concord to sweep through a 5-0 win at Wawasee.
Concord, which is now 1-1 after losing to Penn on April 9, actually played half a match Monday night with NorthWood before calling it for rain. Otherwise, the weather has forced the hand of Concord, as well as just about everyone else including Wawasee, to have to deal with it.
Concord looked every bit the fresher and more seasoned squad Tuesday, with the one singles and one doubles courts looking very sharp. At one doubles, Megan Auger and Emily Davis wasted little time, taking the first 11 games before the rain and needing just a couple serves after the delay to finish off Jada Antonides and Natalie Fritz love and love.
Jenna Landis also won love and love against Esther Hermann at one singles even though Hermann and Landis maintained several volleys before Landis used her speed to end matters.
“I think its tough, we haven’t been outside a lot and I just lost a doubles player to a broken toe,” said Concord head coach Jan Sorg. “We still have to have challenge matches to find out who plays one doubles and who plays two doubles. We haven’t been able to even do that. Normally by now, we would have had several matches in. Those things wouldn’t be an issue like they are now.”
Concord’s Hailey Stiver used a similar method to Landis’ game, working the baseline smartly and dropping in lobs when needed on Katy Ashpole in the two singles match. Stiver won 6-1, 6-1 without much flare to seal the team victory.
The Concord two doubles group of Holly Eldridge and Ashley Smucker seemed most bothered by the rain. Tip-toeing around the endlines, the Dunlap duo decided after Wawasee’s Krissa Keaffaber slipped on a return shot to suspend their match as the raindrops pelted the court.
Upon return, Eldridge and Smucker did not need much more time to beat Keaffaber and Priscilla Par love and two.
Concluding the night at three singles, Holly Angel and Sam Prins went back and forth but Angel made the most of the traded strokes, 6-1, 6-2.
“We still have a lot of movement left in our roster,” started Wawasee head coach Chris Winters. “We just haven’t had a lot of time to get outside and work on the things we need to on the court. We look good indoors, but move outside and its a different story most days. I don’t know if I have a full picture of where they can be the most successful right now. The verdict is still out.”
Concord, which has matches Thursday, Friday, Monday and Tuesday along with a JV Invite on Saturday, are thankful just to be on the court with the bear of a schedule upcoming.
“Things are going to have jell in the next couple of weeks,” Sorg said. “Match play will help some of that, but we have a lot of tennis coming up.”
Wawasee, now 2-3 overall, have lost back-to-back Northern Lakes Conferences after falling, 5-0, Monday night to Goshen after trying twice the week before to get the match in. Winters is seeing a pattern.
“Half of it is foot work, and tonight their footwork looked terrible,” Winters said. “It’s also going back to all the basics. Groundstrokes, volleys, serves. Then you are beating a dead horse, trying to transfer that to a match. We just haven’t had the time to really hit a lot of balls. We just have to go back to some of the basics if we want to be more successful.”
The Concord JV made speedy work in its three wins, led by a doubles shutout by Michaela Searer and Shannon Purcell over Molly Smith and Jazlyn Gehlhausen and singles blanking by Lauren Koerting against Chelsea Carolus. Alexa Klopenstein beat Jaclyn Miller, 8-2, while Wawasee’s Ashley Larson had the lone ‘W’ for the Syracuse gang, an 8-6 JV singles win over Cali Cunningham.
Concord will meet at Memorial and Wawasee will travel to Manchester, both Thursday afternoon schedules.