published Thursday, May 15th, 2014

Notre Dame girls' tennis earns trip to Spring Fling

Two venues and a rain delay later, the Notre Dame girls' tennis team is headed back to Murfreesboro.

The Lady Irish earned a hard-fought 4-2 win over Boyd-Buchanan on Wednesday to advance back to the A/AA state semifinals. The match started out at Champions Club but was moved to McCallie after weather made the courts unplayable.

Sarah Joyce, Sarah Faith Ingell and Mary Margaret Haywood earned wins for the Lady Irish (15-1), while Ingell and Haywood claimed the match-clinching win at No. 2 doubles.

"I'm very excited for our girls," Notre Dame coach Nancy Fox said. "It was a very intense match, and both teams played well. We were outstanding in doubles. When we got to McCallie, the girls were just on fire."

Joyce and Danika Dorris were ahead in their No. 1 doubles match at the time of Ingell and Haywood's win.

Katie Delay and Shelby Brown maintained their undefeated records in match play with singles wins for the Lady Bucs (15-1), who lose only one senior in Paige Zumbrun. Boyd-Buchanan coach Mikki Brown was pleased with what she called a "history-making day" for the Lady Bucs, as they'd never pushed a postseason sectional match to doubles.

"I'm just so proud of the girls. We're taking steps and moving forward," Brown said. "I couldn't ask anymore of the girls; the odds were against them, but they played their hearts out and fought until the very end."

Contact Gene Henley at ghenley@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6311. Follow him at twitter.com/genehenleytfp.

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