STATE TENNIS: Decatur's Meghan Cassens wins her second straight singles title

Decatur's Meghan Cassens had to use every bit of her guile on the tennis court to win her second straight Class 4A singles state championship Saturday.

The junior capped her unbeaten season with a 6-1, 6-3 win over Stanwood's Megan LaLone in the state title match at the Tri-City Court Club. It was the third year in a row that Cassens has played in the state title match. She lost to Gig Harbor's Christy Sipes as a freshman.

But it was the semifinals that proved to be the turning point for Cassens during her 2010 run to the state title. Cassens survived a three-set marathon with Newport's Angela Chan.

After winning the first set pretty easily, 6-2, Chan pulled out the second set, 6-4. Chan then won the first three games of the third set to take a commanding 3-0 lead. But Cassens responded by winning six of the next seven games to win the third set and the state title, 6-4.

The win over LaLone in the championship match was the second straight year that Cassens beat a WesCo League opponent in the final. Last year, she beat Lake Stevens' Antonia Liebenow.

In other state tennis action:

• The Thomas Jefferson brother team of Makoa and Kainoa Rosa finished up in fifth place in the boys' doubles event Saturday in the Tri-Cities.

Rosa and Rosa rolled into the semifinals Friday with a pair of victories. The TJ pair beat Edmonds-Woodway's Jake Lagucik and Youngha Kim in their opener, 6-3, 6-0, and downed Mountainview's Jack Wang and Trevor Jones in the quarterfinals, 6-3, 6-7, 6-1.

Rosa and Rosa then came back Saturday and lost to Clint Vidano and Jack Rechtin, the eventual state champions from Wenatchee, 6-1, 6-2, to fall into the loser's bracket. The TJ team than lost to Puyallup's Michael and Brian Pinkard in the third/fifth match, 6-3, 7-5.

• Beamer's Joseph de la Cruz finished 2-2 at state. The Titan sophomore won his opening-round match, 7-5, 6-2, before losing in the quarterfinals to Skyview's Kent Andreasen, 6-4, 6-3. De la Cruz then beat Eastlake's Vicente Varas, 6-2, 6-4, before a loss to Wenatchee's Hudson Barnhart, 6-3, 6-1.

• The Jefferson doubles team of Caroline Min and Mackenzie Qualls finished 1-2 at state. The Raiders won their opening match over Chelsea Motzer and Lani Sherman from Mead, 4-6, 7-6, 7-6, before losing to Inglemoor's Maria Gonzalez and Jasmine Singh in the quarterfinals, 6-2 6-0.

Min and Qualls then lost to Kentwood's Eliana Spero and Niki Skinner, 6-3, 3-6, 7-6. Gonzalez and Singh went on to the win the 4A doubles title.

• Federal Way's Lauren Lang and Mina Park lost both of their matches Friday. The Eagles lost to Kamiakin's Ali Welch and Demie Warner in their opener, 6-2, 6-1, and Oak Harbor's Laurin Rico and Clarissa Abadesco, 6-1, 6-3.

• Jefferson's Averi Kitsch finished 1-2 in the girls' singles competition Friday. Kitsch lost to Mead's Katijene Stime in her opener, 6-0, 6-1, before beating Edmonds-Woodway's Jane Hong, 6-2, 3-6, 6-4. Kitsch then lost to Wenatchee's Amy Scheumann, 6-2, 6-1.

• The TJ doubles team of Kyle Creek and Brandyn Gomez lost two straight at state, including a 6-4, 2-6, 6-2 loss to Jackson's Robin Choi and David Kim in the consolation bracket.

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