Thomas Jefferson's Ding picks up state medal in Class 1 girls tennis

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Oct. 17—SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Thomas Jefferson standout Allison Ding capped off her tremendous sophomore campaign with a seventh-place finish in the Class 1 state tournament on Saturday at Cooper Tennis Complex.

Ding also came away with a state medal.

After falling to Kennett's Anelle Harris 6-0, 6-1 in the singles consolation semifinal, Ding bounced back with a 6-1, 7-6 triumph over Bolivar's Sophia Vestal in the seventh-place match.

"They moved us outside to start the day, so it was cold and windy," Cavaliers coach Tom Brumfield said. "Allison had a hard time adjusting to the change. She really had a hard time settling into the match. Her opponents' game was better suited for the conditions. In the second match for seventh place, she came out stronger and more adjusted to the conditions. I have to give her a lot of credit. It could have been really easy for her to be frustrated going into that last match.

"But she was determined to finish strong and she did. It was a great tournament for her. I'm very proud of her. To medal in her first time there as a sophomore, that is really special."

Ding went 2-1 in bracket play to advance to the finals. Duchesne's Mary Beckemeier nipped Ding 3-6, 7-6, 10-8 in the opening match on Friday.

Ding recovered by topping Lutheran South's Emma Peper 6-1, 6-0 in the first consolation round. She then beat Harrisonville's Morgan Evans 7-5, 6-4 in the consolation semifinals.

"Yesterday, she had a great day," Brumfield said. "Being her first time there, I was anxious and nervous to see how she would start. But she came out ready to go. The girl she played first ended up finishing second. Allison won the first set then lost in a tiebreaker for the second set and then lost the third set tiebreaker.

"In the process, she had two-match points. She was right there with her. The next two matches Allison kept that momentum going and finished it out with two wins late (Friday)."

In other area results, Mount Vernon featured two doubles teams at state.

And the Mountaineers got off to a strong start in their opening matches.

Mount Vernon's Brooke Loftus-Jessah Anderson defeated Bishop LeBlond's Emily Weddle-Payton Netten 6-4, 6-3, while Isabella Mosley-Allison Schubert topped Trenton's Astrid Soriano-Lydia Leinger 6-3, 6-2.

But Loftus-Anderson suffered a 6-2, 6-3 setback to Clayton's Riley Reeves-Riley Zimmerman in the quarterfinals. Mosley-Schubert also fell to North County's Pace-Jones 6-4, 6-1.

In the consolation quarterfinals, Willow Springs' McKylie Cox-Madisyn Perkins beat Loftus-Anderson 6-4, 7-5, while Bolivar's McKinley Hedges-Brynley Waters defeated Mosley-Schubert 6-3, 6-3.

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