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updated: 9/10/2012 10:25 PM

Consistent Kaneland too much for Rosary

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By Kevin McGavin
Daily Herald Correspondent

The first doubles match told the story Monday afternoon in Aurora.

Rosary senior Paige Robinson and her partner, junior Andrea Goyao, had all the early momentum against Kaneland sophomores Madi Jurcenko and Angelica 'Jelly' Emmanouil in the schools' nonconference girls tennis dual match at Marmion.

But the Knights' No. 1 partnership, with Jurcenko, a returning state qualifier in the event, came alive with an unfettered abandon.

The duo captured 12 of the next 13 games to win going away, 6-3 and 6-1, to power the Knights to a 5-2 victory over the Royals.

Kaneland also swept all three singles matches to improve to 6-3 on the season; Rosary, which had wins at second and fourth doubles, fell to 5-9.

The marquee match featured a withering array -- by both teams -- of punishing ground strokes, volleys for winners and back-and-forth action.

But the Kaneland tandem discovered a remedy for which its Rosary counterparts could not remedy.

"We started to become more consistent and let them make the mistakes," Jurcenko said. "(Robinson and Goyao) are very powerful hitters, and we started hitting off their power and not try to beat their strength."

"They're good players and they're smart," Kaneland coach Tim Larsen said of Jurcenko and Emmanouil. "They make adjustments. They try a lot of different strategies and stick with (what works)."

The unexpected turn of events more or less epitomized the day for the Royals.

"It's all about maintaining the intensity and not letting your opponent dictate the action," Rosary coach John Tseng said. "We keep letting our foot off the gas, so to speak. We're trying to figure out how to build a lead as a team."

The Knights' No. 1 doubles team extended its season-long winning streak to 12 matches with the victory.

In the opening match to conclude, Kaneland sophomore Samantha Schrepferman also notched her 12th win of the season -- against a lone loss -- with a comfortable win over Rosary sophomore Haley Van Dyke.

"She gave me a lot of shots that I haven't seen a whole lot of this season," said Schrepferman, who ended the match with seven consecutive games in her victory column. "(My serves) were going where I wanted them to go."

Stephanie Zwick, a Kaneland junior, defeated the Royals' Alexis Thomas by identical scores of 6-4 and 6-4 at second singles, and Sarah Grams' three-set win -- 6-3, 2-6 and 6-2 -- mathematically sealed the Knights' team victory in the last of the three singles matches.

"It was my first time playing singles all year," said Grams, a three-sport athlete. "Coach was just testing the waters to see what I could do."

"I'm adjusting my lineup," Larsen confirmed. "I think we were getting a little stale."

Colleen Landers and Stephanie Karolewicz outlasted Colleen Madlinger and Marie Zolfo in three sets for the Knights' final win at third doubles.

Rosary received its wins from Megan Conlin and Maddy Deufel at second doubles, while Cara Custer and Sydney Zaragoza denied Kaneland cousins Aly and Brooke Harner at fourth doubles.

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