WINNSBORO — Fairfield Central tennis team saw its season end Monday evening with a close 4-3 loss to the Abbeville Panthers. The match came down to number one doubles play, after the teams’ singles matches and number two doubles match evened out to a 3-3 tie.
FCHS Coach George “Bones” Boulware said his girls had their chances to win the contest but did not take advantage of them.
The number one doubles match was the deciding one. FCHS played its number one and number two players in the pairing. Boulware said the match was close in the early going but eventually Abbeville broke it open and ran away with it.
The Abbeville girls played long matches filled with long rallies, he said. One match went to a third set tiebreaker and was decided 13-11. In that match Chanel Burns bested Abbeville’s Madison Ramey 1/6, 7/5, 13/11.
Boulware said the Panthers were consistent and did not miss much with their shots or serves. At one point, he thought the number two doubles team would pull out a match and give FCHS the win but that did not happen.
On that afternoon, things broke the Panthers’ way but Boulware was still proud of what his team has accomplished this season.
“This was a good group that worked hard and played hard,” he said.
He hopes as the program grows that fan support will increase, and notes that this year was the first time ever FCHS hosted a playoff game.
He is proud of the girls for their accomplishments in the classroom and in life, and said that all of his seniors plan to enroll in college in the fall.
In two years from now, he says his program will be in rebuilding mode. According to Boulware, it takes about three years to become a competitive tennis player. He hopes to either have an assistant or to be an assistant for a new head coach in the future. That way one coach can work developing new players and another can focus on polishing the game of more experienced players. The main thing he would like to have now is more participation from the students, parents and community.
“We need to get more girls to come out and more parents involved,” he said, “because this program helps these girls find success in school and ready them for college.”
Fairfield Central ended its varsity season 17-1.
Match results: 4-3 Abbeville over FCHS
FC - Daijah Davis vs A - Jose Edwards 5/7 0/6
FC - Bre Coad vs A - Sara Beth Sears 4/6 6/1 10/8
FC - Desta Pauling vs A - Kelley Durham 6/4 6/1
FC - Chanel Burns vs A- Madison Ramey
FC - Ashontoe Woodard vs A - Kaitlynn Polatty 0/6 0/6
FC- Daigh Davis & Bre Coad vs A- Josie Edwards & Sara Beth Sears 6/3 6/0
FC - Moesha Young & Cora Foster vs A - Elyse Guy & Molly Beauford 4/6 6/2 6/10.