Natalie Partain

Smoky Mountain’s Natalie Partain returns a shot in the #1 doubles match last Thursday against Brevard. Partain teamed with Ella Harris to win the doubles in both the regular match and one that was completed after being rained out earlier in the season.

By Carey Phillips


Smoky Mountain took a pair of Mountain Six Conference tennis matches from Brevard by 5-4 scores last Thursday at Mark Watson Park.

The first match was a continuation of one that was halted due to rain and darkness Sept. 17 at Brevard.

While both matches resulted in 5-4 SM wins, results of individual contests differed.

Brevard won four of six singles matches in the completion of the Sept. 17 contest. The Lady Mustangs (3-6, 3-5) had to win all three doubles matches, which were played last Thursday, to pull out the win.

In the regular match, SM won four of six in singles and wrapped up the victory with one doubles win.

“I’m proud of the three doubles teams to pick it up and fight through their matches giving us a well overdue win,” Coach Ashley Doolin said.

Results of single matches included:

#1 – Ella Harris (S) over Esther Monahan 6-3, 6-0.

#2 – Eliza Graham (B) over Natalie Partain 3-6, 6-2 (11-9).

#3 – Brianna Jacquin (B) over Katherine Selby 7-5, 7-5.

#4 – Morgan Nelkie (B) over Jenaya Reagan 6-1, 6-3.

#5 – Julianna Welch (S) over Kylie Prescott 6-2, 7-5.

#6 – Andy McKibbon (B) over Hannah Lillard 6-4, 6-3.

Results of doubles matches, all won by the Lady Mustangs, included:

#1 – Harris and Partain over Monahan and Graham 8-5.

#2 Selby and Reagan over Prescott and Jacquin 8-3.

#3 – Welch and Samantha Rosario (S) over Josie Troyer and McKibbon 8-2.

Due to time constraints, singles in the regular match with Brevard were played as a 10-game pro set.

Results of singles matches included:

#1 – Harris (S) over Monahan 10-0.

#2 – Graham (B) over Partain 10-4.

#3 – Welch (S) over Jacquin 10-2.

#4 – Selby (S) over Nelkie 10-5.

#5 – Reagan (S) over Prescott 10-6.

#6 – McKibbon (B) over Rosario 10-2.

Harris and Welch both played well, Doolin said.

She cited Selby and Reagan for their perseverance and determination.

“We like to see that drive in our athletes and it always seems to pays off,” the coach said.

Results of doubles matches included:

#1 – Harris and Partain (S) over Monahan and Jacquin 8-1.

#2 – Graham and Nelkie (B) over Reagan and Selby 9-7.

#3 – Prescott and Troyer (B) over Addison Cowan and Eden Wilson 8-6.

“Harris and Partain played a strong doubles match,” the coach said.

She said Cowan and Wilson played well despite losing at #3 doubles.

 “They’re both coming along nicely” Doolin said. “They have a competitive and strong drive to their game. When we pair them up, they rub off and fuel each other. That’s what we like to see in a doubles partnership. We look forward to seeing their progress as a doubles team and individually because they are making improvements to their game every day.” 

Undefeated Hendersonville rolled to a 9-0 MSC victory Oct. 1 at Hendersonville.

“They’re just a really good and solid team, all the way to their exhibition players,” Doolin said “If competing against Hendersonville wasn’t tough enough already, our girls had to play up a seed after Natalie Partain had a family emergency and was required to leave prior to starting the match.”

Results of singles matches, all won by Hendersonville, included:

#1 – Perry McCollough over Harris 6-0, 6-1.

#2 – Lindsay Bull over Welch 6-0, 6-0.

#3 – Olivia Pursley over Selby 6-1, 6-0.

#4 – Anna Trace over Reagan 6-0, 6-0.

#5 – Celia Donaldson over Hannah Lillard 6-0, 6-0.

#6 – Anne Jones over Rosario 6-0, 6-0.

Results of doubles matches, all won by Hendersonville, included:

#1 – McCollough and Bull over Harris and Welch 8-0.

#2 – Pursley and Trace over Selby and Reagan 8-0.

#3 – Anne Jones and Catherine Jones over LIllard and Cowan 8-5.

Doolin noted that Harris won a game from McCullough, the defending state singles champion.

The conference tournament will be played today (Thursday) at Brevard College.

“We are putting a lot of thought and planning into our decisions going into the conference tournament,” Doolin said.