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Lady Cats pick up 2 courts vs. Floyd

Lady Cats pick up 2 courts vs. Floyd
Lady Cats pick up 2 courts vs. Floyd
Waiting near the baseline, North Harrison's Lindsey Schumaker hits a return shot against Floyd Central's Kathryn Sparrow. Photo by Brian Smith

The team score may have read ‘Floyd Central 3, North Harrison 2,’ but the Lady Cats came away with a few smiles and optimism.
Hosting the Lady Highlanders Thursday, North Harrison is well aware of who they must defeat to have a shot at winning the program’s first sectional title in girls’ tennis since 2000.
Floyd Central has dominated the girls’ sectional, which features both teams, in recent memory. The Lady Highlanders have accumulated 15 sectionals and seven regional titles in a row.
So Thursday, coming away with singles victories by Sydney Fravel and Lindsey Schumaker, brought the reality of hanging with the Lady Highlanders in the sectional down the road as possible.
‘It was a really good match, but we did lose 2-3,’ Fravel said. ‘It does, however, show how really close it will be in sectional. My sister (Payton) and I, along with a few of the other girls, have been preparing (for Floyd Central) all year. We knew it would be a close match, and it did get our confidence up.’
In the first set versus Emily Stock, Sydney Fravel went back and forth in the match at No. 2 singles. Pushing to a tie-breaker, Fravel took control of the pressure points, winning 7-2.
Tied at 3-all in the second set, Fravel had a setback to trail a game, 4-3, as the wind gusts picked up. Closing strong, Fravel held serve after breaking Stock to win the match, 6-4.
‘My last point, when I got to deuce, I told myself I wasn’t losing this point,’ Fravel said. ‘I had to shake off the point I lost. Earlier in my first set, I got down on myself. I bounced back and got back to hitting corners more.’
On the next court, Schumaker dropped the first set of No. 3 singles to Kathryn Sparrow 7-5. Improving her play, Schumaker rallied to win the next set 6-4 to force a third. After consulting with coaches, players agreed to play a pro-set in the third to determine the winner.
Schumaker won the first three points, paving the way to a 10-7 triumph.
‘I didn’t give up,’ Fravel said. ‘I went into the tie-breaker and ended up winning. Lindsey was next to me and went to a third-set tie-breaker and won. We are getting our confidence up.’
Action at No. 1 was intense as well. North Harrison’s Payton Fravel and North Harrison’s Kailyn Little were throwing winners at different angles and variations.
Little, however, went on to win the match 6-4, 6-4.
Doubles play went the way of the Lady Highlanders. Alex Jamison and Madison Woosley defeated North Harrison pair Rachel Biddle and Rachel Lett 6-3, 6-0 at the No. 1 slot. At No. 2 doubles, Leah Bauman and Haley Palmer defeated Sarah Yost and Kelsey Bruce 6-2, 6-3.
The loss dropped North Harrison to 8-3 on the season. Maintaining a 4-0 mark in Mid-Southern Conference play, the Lady Cats seek to repeat for the league crown.
‘We are trying to win conference again,’ Sydney Fravel said. ‘Next week we have all conference matches. Our last match for conference is at home, so we will be excited for that.’
Fravel said her backhand has come around the last few weeks. The shot was key to her win over Floyd Central.
For the Lady Cats, it’s about team and chasing the league and sectional title.
‘We’re all doing good and working together,’ Sydney Fravel said. ‘We want to win. Payton and I played doubles our freshman year, so we give our doubles’ players tips. It’s a team sport for us. We’re like a big family when it comes to tennis.’
North Harrison will host Brownstown Central tomorrow (Thursday) then participate in the Crawford County Invitational on Saturday.