Another outstanding season came to end Friday afternoon with a 5-0 loss to a dominant Carmel Greyhounds team in the quarterfinal round of the IHSAA Team State Finals.
Second-ranked Carmel, the two-time defending state champions, overpowered 23rd-ranked Delta for the second time this season.
Delta (21-4) managed to win 14 games against Carmel in an early season dual, but the Eagles collected only eight games in the state match.
Janet Wegener and Katie Manor were competitive in the first set at No. 1 doubles. Carmel’s Alexa Lewis and Ali Griffin won 6-3 in the opening set, but then dominated the second set 6-0. Lewis and Griffin improved to 27-1, the Greyhounds’ best individual record.
Wegener and Manor finished the year 24-4 in their first season as partners. Wegener, a senior, graduates with 69 career varsity wins in just three years of tennis. She ties Tynan Dishman, who also played only three years of varsity (due to Covid) and also won 69 matches. Those two are tied with former doubles star Aly Ferguson, who also won 69 matches in three varsity seasons. Andrea Bookmyer holds the school record with 72 wins in three seasons of varsity play. Bookmyer reached the State Final Four in doubles as a sophomore (with Kate Peckinpaugh) and as a junior and senior (with Aly Ferguson).
Manor, a freshman, is off to a great start in challenging the all-time school record of 86 career varsity wins, shared by Hayley Hall and Kristin Crider. She will need to average 20.7 wins per season over her final three years to break the record.
At No. 2 doubles, sophomore Kelsey Vest and freshman Rowan Hinds battled hard against Carmel in a 6-1, 6-2 defeat. Vest finished her first full season of varsity competition with a 23-4 record while Hinds ended at 22-4 in her freshman season. She also is on pace to potentially break the school career victory record in the future.
Games were difficult to come by in singles as Carmel’s players combined power with pinpoint accuracy to keep the Eagles off balance all day. Junior Gabby Knight won one game at No. 1 singles; sophomore Brylee Beckley was shut out at No. 2 singles; and senior Iva Witter gained one game at No. 3 singles.
Witter was one of only two seniors among the Eagles’ top eight players. After missing her freshman year due to Covid and then playing JV as a sophomore, she emerged on the varsity at No. 2 doubles a year ago and won 20 matches with partner Madelyn Haley. After switching to singles this season, she put together a fine 21-6 record, including a victory in the semi-state over Homestead that clinched the state finals berth for the Eagles.
Knight, a junior playing No. 1 singles for the first season, compiled an 18-10 record against a tough schedule. At least of her losses have been to girls who most likely will be on the All-State team when those selections are made next weekend.
Knight now has 48 career varsity wins in three seasons.
Beckley, a sophomore, finished with a 16-10 record and has 30 career varsity wins in her first two seasons.
Another young player, freshman Elizabeth Bamidele, was 5-1 varsity and 12-3 JV and will earn a varsity letter. She gives the Eagles six returning varsity players next season.
Accomplishments this season included a 13th straight Hoosier Heritage Conference title, a sectional title for the 30th time in the past 31 years, a regional title for the eighth consecutive time, and a state finals berth for the sixth time. In addition, the team raised in excess of $20,000 at SmashCancer.