By DAVID VANTRESS
THE GOSHEN NEWS
When you talk about local prep sports dynasties, the Northridge girls tennis team has to be part of the conversation.
The Raiders made it six consecutive sectional championships Thursday afternoon, dispatching NLC foe Concord, 4-1 in the
championship meet of the Northridge Sectional.
Northridge coach Angie Brenneman has guided the Raiders to the past five of those sectional crowns. Thursday afternoon, the Raiders battled one of the warmest days of the spring so far.
A focus on conditioning makes the difference for Northridge, Brenneman said.
“We love playing in these types of conditions,” Brenneman said. “I’m proud of our girls ... We talked about coming out ready to play today, and they went out and did it. Our seniors led the way.”
Northridge senior No. 1 singles player Sarah Smith was an example of just the kind of tenaciousmess Brenneman likes to see in her players. Smith, in one of the longest matches of the afternoon, bested Concord’s Jenna Landis, 6-3, 6-1.
The heat made the match feel longer than it was, Smith said.
“Every point was hard,” Smith said.
The meet had been decided in favor of Northridge about midway through the No. 1 singles match, but that didn’t mean it was time for Smith to ease up in her match.
“I still wanted to win my match, so I just kept up the pressure,” Smith said.
Concord coach Jan Soward found a bright spot in her No. 2 doubles team. Long after the meet result had been determined, the Minutemen’s Holyn Eldridge and Samantha Lutian bested Northridge’s Emily Erekson and Mackenzie Martin, 6-2, 7-6 (8-6).
It was the third time this season the quartet met on the court.
“We fought every point,” Soward said. “Northridge is a tough team to beat.”
The Raiders (12-1 and ranked No. 27 in the state) move on to the Northridge Regional next Tuesday.
They will face the winner of Friday night’s championship match of the Goshen Sectional.
Concord finishes 11-5.
Northridge 4, Concord 1
No. 1 — Sarah Smith (N) def. Jenna Landis, 6-3, 6-1.
No. 2 — Ashley Owens (N) def. Hailey Stiver 6-1, 6-2.
No. 3 — Emily Hughes (N) def. Holly Angel 6-0, 6-1.
No. 1 — Olivia Erekson-Courtney Clark (N) def. Megan Auger-Emily Davis 6-4, 6-2.
No. 2 — Holyn Eldridge-Samantha Lutian (C) def. Emily Erekson-Mackenzie Martin 6-2, 7-6 (8-6).