By Jean LeBlanc
BERLIN — The Berlin varsity girls' tennis team completed a perfect regular season, winning its final three matches in three days to retain the top seed in Division III at 14-0.
Berlin 9, Kennett 0
The Mounties rolled to a 9-0 win over Division II Kennett High in Gorham on Monday. In singles, Audrey Coulombe won 8-1 over Olivia Couture; Myra Arsenault won 8-0 over Becca Lees; Emily Theriault rolled 8-0 over Liz Davis; Rylie Binette beat Abby Acone 8-2; Julie Downs was an 8-1 winner over Alex Samuel; and Haley Coulombe beat Jasmine Schmidt 8-1.
In doubles, A.Coulombe/Rylie Binette won 8-1 over Couture/Lees; Theriault/Downs shutout Davis/Acone 8-0; and H. Coulombe/Becca Wild defeated Samuel/Schmiot 8-2.
"We were able to mix up our doubles," said coach Rancloes, "It is a chance to try new things before the tournament. You never can be too sure things will go the way you plan. The more wrenches we can throw at the girls the stronger they will be."
Berlin 8, White Mountains 1 (Senior Day)
"It was a great night for the girls," stated a delighted Rancloes. "We got all our seniors in matches. The parents and family members were great. We had a huge crowd. It was a lot of fun and the girls really enjoyed themselves. We moved Haley and Becca to No. 2 doubles. They responded very well. We are still tweaking things in order to get ready for the tournament. Brianne Morneau and Sam Mercier were down 4-1 and came back 5-4. They made it a match and never stopped fighting. That is what this team is all about."
In singles, Audrey Coulombe shut out Catrina Boggess 8-0; Arsenault won 8-3 over Lydia Beaulieu; Theriault defeated Angie Zagac 8-0; Binette bested Reilly Mackillop 8-4; Downs was an 8-1 winner over Lexus McFarland, and Haley Coulombe beat Ashleigh Eaton 8-3.
In doubles, Berlin's top duo of A. Coulombe/Arsenault won 8-1 over Boggess/Beaulieu; H. Coulombe/Wild defeated the Zagac/Mackillop 8-2; and Morneau/Mercier fell 8-5 to Eaton/Ariel Howard.
Berlin 9, Gilford 0
The Berlin girls served notice to the rest of Division III, rolling to a convincing 9-0 win over the Gilford Eagles on Wednesday in Gilford. It was the final regular season game for both teams.
Berlin finished at 14-0, while Gilford wrapped up at 6-8.
"The last match of the season, so we decided to really change up things," said Rancloes. "We took Myra out of the lineup and moved everyone up one spot. Again, we are trying to get ready for the tournament. Allowing everyone to play up a spot will only help us in the long run. It was 90 plus degrees on the court. Emily played the No. 2 spot and played the match of her life. She was out there for an hour and 20 minutes. I don’t know how she did it. It must have been close to 100 degrees on the court during her match. She played so well; she was very patient and played smart. I’m very happy for her."
Rancloes continued, "Becca played in her first singles match since we opened against Prospect. She did very well. She was very focused and it showed. She was able to withstand a comeback by Olivia. That shows mental toughness. It was a great way to end the season. Everyone played well even with the heat. I’m very happy where we are. We will enjoy this for a couple of days but the focus now has to be on the new season (tournament), which we haven’t won a game yet."
In singles, Mountie Audrey Coulombe was an 8-5 winner over Reagan McIntire; Theriault fought off Sara Fillion 8-6; Binette rolled past Josey Curley 8-1; Downs defeated Olivia Salesky 8-1; Haley Coulombe bested Hannah Lord 8-4; and Wild won 8-5 over Olivia Comeau.
In doubles, the Mounties swept the competition again to make the final score 9-0. Mounties A.Coulombe/Arsenault were 9-7 winners over Boggess/Beaulieu; Theriault/Downs shut down Salesky;Lord 8-0; and Binette/H. Coulombe silenced Yzabelle Mitchell/Madison Eastman 8-0.
The Berlin girls will be the home team throughout the playoffs.