The balance of power in girls tennis in the Nisqually League may be shifting toward Eatonville.
The Cruisers won their first four matches of the 2013 season. Included among their victims were the Wright Tarriers, who have dominated the league for many years.
Eatonville beat them 3-2, getting the deciding points from the doubles teams of Lauren Pate and Abbey Disch and Mandalyn Swinney and Mykayla Schoeph and in singles from Cassidy Forler.
In another recent outing, the Cruisers topped Vashon 3-2 behind Stephanie Baker, among others. Baker, a fourth-year senior who’s been playing no. 1 singles, beat freshman Taryn Mulvalhill 7-6, 6-2 in a match Eatonville coach MaryAnn Baker called “very close.”
The coach said Baker’s “polished ground strokes and tough mental game” were the difference in winning a tie-breaker in the first set.
Swinney and Jasmine James also needed a tie-breaker to win their doubles contest 6-1, 7-6.
The Cruisers’ Brooke Brandt and Darci Clement, who are in their first season as varsity players, won their doubles match 7-5, 6-2 to break the 2-2 team score.
Four Nisqually 1A schools have girls’ tennis teams. To fill out their regular season, they’re scheduled to play each other three times. Cascade Christian is the fourth participant.
Baker is the lone senior on an Eatonvlle team that is otherwise dominated by juniors (Pate, Forler, Swinney, James and Clement) and sophomores (Rachel Price, Disch and Brandt).