The Winona Secondary School tennis team won the district title last Friday after defeating Senatobia on the road.
The Tigers qualified for state competition in both team play and individual play. They beat district opponents Ruleville and Senatobia to finish first in Class 3 Region 3.
“You have individual points and you have team points based on the matches you’ve won as a team,” Coach Lance VanHorn said. “Monday, we will be playing Kossuth in the first round of team tennis.”
VanHorn said the tournament is single elimination, so the Tigers must win to continue on.
Several players moved on to state for individual play, which will begin on April 26 in Oxford.
Murry Catherine Alderman qualified to go to state in girls singles, and Kirven McCrory in boys singles. Molly Tompkins and Sam Matrisciano qualified in mixed doubles. Khristian Williams and Jemarius Sanders qualified for boys doubles.
VanHorn said the team is made up of eight to 10 seasoned players who have played the last several years, but he also has some new additions that have stepped up this season.
“This year has been challenging in the aspect that there has been a lot of line-up shuffling,” VanHorn said. “Some was my own doing, and some were due to circumstances out of my control. We’ve been figuring out the best fit and putting the best people together. And it worked because we’ve won.”
VanHorn said other challenges like the weather and COVID-19 have caused problems with match cancelations, but overall, it has been a good year for the Tigers.
“We’ve played well,” VanHorn said. “But from a coaching standpoint, it has been a challenging year.”