Spruce Creek took both the girls and boys titles on Thursday, March 22, at the Florida Tennis Center in Daytona Beach.
With her chance at a singles conference title on the line, the Bulldogs’ Nina Walls was down 9-3 in the tie-breaker set in her singles finals match against Seabreeze. Walls, the Bulldogs’ No. 4 singles player, won the first set 7-6 before dropping the second set 6-0.
She needed to refocus.
“I just decided that I had to play better,” Walls said. “I played more aggressive. Luckily, I was able to pull through.”
Walls won the final set 11-9, making her one of six Bulldogs to win their singles finals matches. Two doubles teams won their matches.
However, Flagler Palm Coast came up just short Spruce Creek in the Five Star Conference Championship on Thursday, March 22, at the Florida Tennis Center in Daytona Beach. The girls team finished in second, and the boys team finished in third. Spruce Creek claimed both team titles. DeLand took second for the boys.
FPC coach Per Berg was happy with the performance of both of his teams but attributed unfortunate seeding as one of the reasons the Bulldogs didn’t come out on top.
“We knew it was going to be tight today,” Berg said. “I thought our girls had a chance to win. Our No. 1 and No. 2 just didn’t win enough matches.”
Next up for the Bulldogs is the district tournament. The boys play April 17-18, and the girls play play April 18-19.
Walls said FPC’s finish in the conference tournament is a confidence booster heading into a district that features the likes of Buchholz, which had the No. 2 girls team in the state last season, and Fleming Island, which have the No. 1 and No. 2-ranked boys in the state.
“This shows us what we need to focus on,” she said. “We have a lot of depth, and we can win with that. But we need to win more with our doubles. Just knowing that if we had won at least some of those matches, we would have had a pretty good chance at winning the conference.”
Walls added: “One more match really isn’t that hard if you think about it.”