Paw Paw’s Castellanos goes to State

Butch Hindenach •

   THREE RIVERS -  A strong performance in the Wolverine Conference girls tennis meet topped off a very successful season for the Lady Redskins this past week. Girls tennis at Paw Paw since its inception in the 1972-73 school season has been more of a down than up experience much of the time; but this season the girls and Coach Warner Offord III and his assistant Joel Smola put together one of the better seasons in  the program’s history. A fourth place finish in the league meet equaled the second best place ever, tied with three other teams. The 2003-04 squad holds the top place with a second place in that year’s league tourney. 
   In No.1 singles, Lorena Alves Castellanos continued her season-long unbeaten streak, defeating the top singles players from Vicksburg, Sturgis, and Allegan to earn the first place medal and All-Conference First Team status. She now moves on to the state finals as one of the top seeds in her flight in the state.
   Second singles Erica Holter, who had only two defeats this season, started out with a 6-0, 6-0 win, but a quad muscle injury hampered her the rest of the day, and she finally had to default after trying her best to still compete.  Kelsie Imus fought her way to a third place finish, and Meredith Brown ended in sixth place with a good performance in the No. 3 and No. 4 singles flights, respectively.
   Lauren Cox and Abby Schupbach played well against Sturgis, Plainwell, and Vicksburg in their No. 1 doubles slot. Aleah Watson and Macey Imus battled their way to fifth place in No. 2 doubles, as did Erica Schafer and Emily Malcom in the No. 3 flight. In No. 4 doubles play, Sierra Dooley and Mariah Kelly defeated Vicksburg 6-0, 6-0, and then beat Sturgis in a tight one, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4. They fell in the finals against a very strong Vicksburg team to finish second, and receive All- Conference Honorable Mention recognition.


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