Batavia's Lauren Herrmann wasn't going to just quit Saturday morning, especially when every match meant so much.
Herrmann injured her left ankle in the second game of the first set of the No. 3 doubles championship match at the Upstate Eight Conference River Division tournament at Elgin High School.
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"I was thinking that I wouldn't be able to play the match and we would have to forfeit," Herrman said. "I really didn't want to let down my partner Morgan (Hess). I wasn't going to give up. I was at least going to try."
After a visit with the trainer, Herrmann was able to continue. Herrmann and Hess rallied from a set down to beat St. Charles East's Meghan Gauthier and Kellie Sciurba, 1-6, 6-2, 6-2.
"It was an adjustment," Hess said. "I was at the baseline a lot, which is a new thing for me. We've played a certain way the entire season. After the first set, we started to get more momentum as we started to figure things out."
"It's feeling pretty good now. Better than it was before," said Herrman, who even took a picture with the trainer after the match.
The extra point was important as the Bulldogs entered the tournament with a one-point lead, 35-34, over the Saints. Batavia ended up winning four titles to claim the UEC River title for the third consecutive season. The Bulldogs finished with 69 points. STC East finished second with 65. Geneva was third with 58, followed by St. Charles North (48), Elgin (27), Larkin (22) and Streamwood (5).
Batavia also got first-place finishes from Liza Fruendt (No. 2 singles), Nora McClure (No. 3 singles) and the team of Jenny Mizikar and Amelia Cogan (No. 1 doubles). Miranda Grizaffi was third at No. 1 singles as well. But it was Herrmann and Hess' effort that really impressed Bulldogs coach Brad Nelson.
"The third doubles match was amazing," Nelson said. "What those girls did in that match, I haven't seen anything like it since I've been coaching. And I've been coaching since 1999."
The Saints had teams in all four doubles championship matches, but were only able to win one. Carly Huskisson and Alexa Huskisson beat Geneva's Margo Hess and Joannie Educate, 6-1, 6-3, in the No. 2 doubles title match. Hayden Jones and Kelsie Roberton (No. 1 doubles) and Lauren McNally and Emmy Russell (No. 4 doubles) also took second for East. Jaci Spoerl finished third in No. 2 singles for the Saints.
St. Charles North earned one tournament title as freshmen Morgan Rerko and Brittany Rohrsen rallied for a 4-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7-1) victory over McNally and Russell in the No. 4 doubles championship match. The North Stars finished third in the other three doubles bracket. Ashley Randazzo and Faith Oehlerking (No. 1), Alex Duncan and Kaity Wolfe (No. 2) and Abby Kloberdanz and Lianne Anderson (No. 3) all helped the North Stars finish fourth.
Geneva sophomore Kirby Einck enjoyed the chilly conditions and cruised to a 6-2, 6-0 victory over Elgin's Dahlia Keonavongsa at No. 1 singles.
"I would prefer to play in colder weather. It's a personal preference," said Einck, who took second last year at the conference meet. "You have to constantly be moving. You just want to keep your blood flowing."
Emma Hazel (No. 2) and Shannon Foster (No. 3) each finished second in their respective singles bracket for the Vikings.