Kevin Goheen reports:
Ursuline Academy drew the top seeds in each of the five brackets of Flight A for this year’s Greater Cincinnati Tennis Coaches Association Classic tournament beginning today.
The Lions, ranked No. 1 in The Enquirer Division I area coaches’ poll and No. 4 in the state coaches’ poll, will be joined in Flight A by No. 2 Sycamore, No. 3 Lakota East, No. 4 Mason and No. 5 Lakota West as well as the top three locally ranked Division II teams in Indian Hill, Wyoming and Cincinnati Christian Hills Academy.
Semifinals and finals for all seven flights are scheduled for Saturday morning. A total of 47 schools are participating in this year’s tournament. Flight A will be played at Sycamore and CHCA, Flight B at Mason, Flight C at Anderson and Turpin, Flight D at Summit Country Day and Seven Hills, Flight E at Fairfield, Flight F at Colerain and Northwest and Flight G at Wilmington.
Defending state singles champion Mehvish Safdar is the top seed at No. 1 singles in Flight A. Safdar, an Ursuline junior, is 11-2 this season with both losses coming against Mount Notre Dame senior Sandy Niehaus.
Niehaus was the state singles champ in 2010 and was runner-up to Safdar last year. Safdar won four of six matches against Niehaus last year but the two won’t meet again this season until the postseason.
Sixth-ranked Mount Notre Dame is in Flight B.
“Both matches were battles,” said Ursuline coach Joe Hartkemeyer. “I was hoping they’d get to play again but I guess we’ll wait until sectionals.”
Tori Turner of Lakota West is the second seed at No. 2 singles in Flight A, while Cincinnati Country Day sophomore Danielle Wolf is seeded No. 2 behind Niehaus in Flight B. Wolf placed fourth in Division II state singles last year.
Senior Diana Suarez (12-0) and freshman Jenny Duma (14-0) are the top seeds at No. 2 and No. 3 singles. Seniors Kristen Behrens and Grace Kallenberg, state qualifiers last year, are 14-1 at No. 1 doubles. Sophomore Lauren Haney and junior Brooke Sabo are 7-0 as a team at No. 2 doubles.