Riders Tie For Second In Final WBL Standings

St. Marys’ Clare Caywood tied the all-time school record in wins with 73 during day two of the Western Buckeye League Girls Tennis Championship on Saturday.
Sports Editor

Since the 1999 and 2000 seasons, the St. Marys Roughriders girls tennis team enjoyed their best finishes in the Western Buckeye League final standings after placing second place on Saturday at the University of Northwest Ohio.

The Roughriders (8-1 WBL) were runners-up last season and tied for second place this year after finishing third in the WBL Girls Tennis Championship, which concluded Saturday. With the Riders finishing second in the regular season, St. Marys tied with Wapakoneta (7-2) in the final standings with 17 points each.

Shawnee (9-0) won its second straight WBL title.

Three positions finished in third place and the two other positions finished in sixth place at the tournament, while first singles senior Clare Caywood tied the school record for most wins all-time in program history.

“I was pleased with how we played in the tournament, it was just that some of the other girls played really good tonight,” Roughriders coach Mariah Krugh said. “It was a lot more competitive this year, in my opinion. Everybody was pretty young last year and everybody returned players this year, unfortunately, we have all seniors, but that is also fortunate for this year.”

Caywood came into the tournament two wins shy of Tara Smith’s 73-win record and moved within one win after play Thursday.

The senior then played Bath’s Esther Bolon — the lone player to beat Caywood this season — where Caywood fell, 6-3, 6-2 to send her to the third/fourth place match, where she defeated Kenton’s Mykaela Schriber, 6-1, 6-2 to finish in third place. 

With Caywood’s win against Schriber, the senior will enter sectional play tied for the most wins all-time.

Caywood enters the Division II postseason with an 18-2 record this year.

“I cannot be more proud of Clare,” Krugh said, who was passed by Caywood for third place in wins a few weeks ago. “I don’t see how anybody can have anything other than pride for what Clare has accomplished and I have been lucky enough to coach her these last two years.

“It’s not too often that a coach and player are both on that leaderboard and I am excited to be a part of that.”

After her first-day victory against Van Wert’s Allie Etter, second singles player Allie Vanderhorst took on Shawnee’s Kunmi Ojo in three sets in a 2-6, 6-0, 2-6 defeat.

Vanderhorst, however, responded with a 6-4, 6-0 victory against Wapakoneta’s Madison Snider to take third place. Vanderhorst’s record is 16-4 and 8-1 in the WBL in her first season as a singles player.

First doubles team Kara Danaher and Lydia Dabis also took third place with wins against Defiance’s Camillia Rodriguez and Alexa McNett to advance to the semifinals and a 7-6 (3), 7-6 (9-7) against Van Wert’s Olivia Kline and Paige Moonshower. The Roughriders duo lost to Wapakoneta’s Casey Mining and Alyssa Good in the semifinal round.

Danaher and Dabis both conclude the regular season and tournament with a 12-5 record.

At third singles, Elizabeth Sutton started Saturday in the back draw with a win against Van Wert’s Emma Rutkowski 9-7, then lost to Bath’s Fayme Ghandi, 8-4, to finish sixth. Sutton’s record is 10-10.

At second doubles, Kirsten Schnelle and Jenna Hawkey finished sixth, beginning Saturday with an 8-4 win in the back draw against Kenton’s Abigail Obertlitner and Kayce Sherman, before falling to Defiance’s Yoselin Ruiz and Chloe Wetstein, 9-7.

The Roughriders’ second doubles team finishes with a record of 8-7.

Attention now turns to the postseason, which begins Thursday with a Division II sectional tournament back at UNOH.

To read the full story, pick up the print edition of The Evening Leader on Monday.