Yellow Jackets advance to second round – Daily Leader

Yellow Jackets advance to second round

Posted 7:11 pm Tuesday, April 4, 2023

BROOKHAVEN — Enterprise won six of seven courts to edge Puckett in the first round of the MHSAA Class 1 Team Tennis Playoffs. The Yellow Jackets advance to play Mize in the second round next Tuesday.

Head coach Karen Dunaway said the location and time of their second-round matchup will be determined at a later date. It was a convincing win for Enterprise, as players battled against gusty winds. According to the National Weather Service, sustained winds blew around 21 mph with gusts to 36 mph during the game.

Enterprise No.1 women’s doubles Elle Davis and Hailey Carithers won their court 6-1, 6-0. Women’s doubles No. 2 Hannah Jergins and Kailee Nuckles won 6-0, 6-0.

In mixed doubles, Hunter Givens and Allayna Barnet won 6-2, 6-0 and were the first Yellow Jackets pairing to finish play. Doubles No. 1 boys Evan Brumfield and Zac Thompson won 7-5 and 6-0. Boys doubles No. 2 Jake Waldrop and Kegan King won 6-2, 7-5.

Eighth grader Marlee Johnson won her court 6-3, 6-0. She said this was her first year playing singles for the varsity team and her second season playing tennis at Enterprise. The win was the first playoff appearance for her, as Enterprise missed the team’s playoffs last year.

“It was a bit scary. He was scared in school, but it was fun and enjoyable to play Puckett,” Johnson said. “We were in the middle of the first set and I was in shock. I had to stop and tell me you’re catching up. You can hit back and you’re fine. It worked. In the second set I was calm and collected, everything went well. Everything was fine.

She said the wind played a factor in her approach to the match. While some players continued to hit high, looping shots, Johnson tried to downplay his own so they wouldn’t get caught in the wind.

“It is very hard. I swear half the shots were slightly curved and that was annoying,” Johnson said. “When he hit the ball, he would go up because it kept going up with the wind.”

She was introduced to tennis two years ago by her cousin Addie Foster from Brookhaven High School. She said that until her cousin introduced her to tennis, she never thought about the sport. However, she is happy because of all the sports she has tried, tennis is her favorite.

In four years, she hopes to play tennis at Co-Lin or Southwest Community College. The natural coordination and good feeling she gets while playing tennis is the reason why she stuck with him. While the team competes in the MHSAA playoffs, she also hopes to play in the singles state tournament at the end of April.

“It’s exciting. I’ve had a lot of faith in this team that we could make it to the playoffs,” Johnson said. “Individuals it was tough, but we did it. I’m very happy to move on and I’m starting to play some good tennis.”

West Lincoln is scheduled to play in the second round against Sacred Heart at Tatum Park in Hattiesburg on Thursday weather permitting. The match will begin at 1:30 pm Bogue Chitto will play the winner of East Marion vs. North Forrest Wednesday at 3:30 pm Bogue Chitto’s second round match will be played at Brookhaven City Courts.


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