There’s a vast difference between playing No. 1 and No. 3 in high school tennis.
Just ask Porter-Gaud freshman Ann Martin Skelly, who seldom lost at the high school level until this fall when she made the move to the top of the Cyclones’ singles lineup.
“The competition is so much tougher,” Shelly said Wednesday after losing to Cardinal Newman standout Brittney Desmond during Porter-Gaud’s 5-1 victory in the SCISA Class AAA girls state quarterfinals.
“Your team is counting on you to lead them. But I love playing No. 1.”
Skelly will lead the Cyclones against fellow Region III foe Hilton Head Christian in Friday’s 2 p.m. state semifinals at Sumter’s Palmetto Tennis Center. Porter-Gaud (9-3) owns 5-1 and 7-2 wins over Hilton Head Christian this season, but Christian’s two-handed hitting eighth-grader Madison Dillon defeated Skelly both times.
All eyes will be on the other semifinal where heavily favored defending state champion Hilton Head Prep puts its 26-match winning streak on the line against Hammond School.
The winners of the two Friday matches that include three Region III teams will square off at 10 a.m. Saturday for the state championship.
Hammond scored a 6-3 win over Ashley Hall in the quarterfinals, while Hilton Head Prep rolled over Pinewood Prep, 6-0.
For the second-straight week, College of Charleston freshman Laura Fuenfstueck was named Colonial Athletic Association Women’s Golfer of the Week on Thursday.
Fuenfstueck shared the weekly award with Amanda Terzian of Delaware. The rookie from Frankfurt, Germany, led the Cougars to another first-place team finish at the JU Classic held on Oct. 14-15 on the par-72, 5,987-yard Marsh Landing Country Club course in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
The Citadel men’s and women’s cross country teams will battle it out Friday with crosstown rival Charleston Southern in a dual meet at James Island County Park.
The women’s 5K race is slated for 3 p.m., with the men’s 8k following at 3:30.
The Citadel raced against CSU on the same course earlier this season at the Will Wilson Citadel Invitational. The Bulldogs men’s team took first overall with CSU finishing second. On the women’s side, CSU nabbed the first place finish over The Citadel by two points.