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updated: 10/5/2013 7:16 PM

St. Charles East perfect at Geneva invite

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St. Charles East girls tennis coach Sena Drawer spent her Friday night at the movie theater watching the suspenseful space drama film, Gravity.

On Saturday, she spent part of the day biting her nails while watching the Saints post a 3-0 record at the Geneva Invitational.

The Saints defeated Kaneland (6-2) and Bartlett (7-1) after rallying for a 5-3 decision over Wheaton Academy in the day's opening match, thanks to a marathon 4-6, 7-5, 10-8 victory by seniors Haydyn Jones and Kelsie Roberton over the Warriors' Kylie Holtgren and Maisie Howland at second doubles.

"They were down 4-1 and 5-2 at one point but pulled it out," said Drawer. "I wish they'd give me less stress."

The Saints' third and fourth doubles teams of Katie Downing-Kelly Rinker and Jamie Youngberg-Emmy Russell finished the day with a 3-0 record, while senior Sarah Church won all 3 of her matches while alternating from first and second singles.

Seniors Alexa and Carly Huskisson won 2 of their 3 matches, while dropping a tough 6-7 (8), 6-0, 6-10 first doubles decision to Wheaton Academy's Lexi Walton and Betsy Jones.

"The twins did an excellent job against Wheaton Academy, taking them to a third set and winning the second set 6-0," said Drawer.

The Saints' coach juggled her lineup a bit against Kaneland, elevating junior Jaci Spoerl to the No. 1 singles position for a match against the Knights' returning state qualifier, Sammie Schrepferman.

Spoerl suffered a 5-7, 3-6 defeat but gained experience in the process, according to her coach.

"At first, she was a little reluctant to do that but Kaneland isn't in our sectional this year," Drawer said of Spoerl. "She needed the opportunity to play at first singles since she'll probably play there next year. She definitely held her own."

Kaneland (1-2 for the day) received a 3-0 finish from its top doubles pairing of Madi Jurcenko and Angelica Emmanouil, who improved their overall mark to 21-0 with wins over Geneva, St. Charles East and St. Charles North.

"I think learning to work together last year was a big, big deal for them," said Knights coach Tim Larsen, who received a "Happy Birthday" serenade from his team and St. Charles East prior to the match with the Saints.

"They're very good at making adjustments in the middle of their matches," added Larsen, whose returning state-qualifying team will head to the West Aurora sectional in two weeks.

Jurcenko, who received plenty of support from her aunt, uncle and cousins from Wisconsin on Saturday, credits her team's consistency as a key to their success.

"We don't try to beat people at their strengths -- we beat them at their weaknesses," she said. "We try to be mentally tough."

Schrepferman began the day with a straight-set loss to Geneva's Kirby Einck (4-6, 1-6).

"She was encouraged after Kirby's match because she played well," said Larsen.

Einck, whose only 2 losses this season are to Naperville Central standout Tiffany Chen, capped the day with a pair of 6-0, 6-0 wins against Bartlett and Wheaton Academy after being pushed in the first set by Schrepferman.

"She has improved so much from last year," Einck said of Schrepferman.

Geneva knocked off Kaneland (7-1) and Bartlett (7-1) before losing a tight 5-3 decision to Wheaton Academy.

Einck, Grace Krueger and Elizabeth Prendergast all finished 3-0 on the day for the Vikings.

"My girls played really well the first two rounds but then I think they were worried about Homecoming (dance)," said Vikings coach Maureen Weiler. "And then when we had that lightning delay (30 minutes), I think I lost them.

"It was good competition for us," added Weiler. "Wheaton Academy has good doubles teams."

Walton and Jones capped a 3-0 day with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Geneva's Margo Hess and Emma Hazel.

"Lexi has just recovered from a back injury," said Warriors coach Matt Hockett. "This is their first week playing together this year so they're still trying to find their rhythm. Their record is 4-0 now."

Bartlett's top doubles team of Jen Gates and Gabriella Gregorio won all 3 of their matches Saturday, rallying from a 1-5 second-set deficit to beat St. Charles North.

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