By Marty Farmer
The Huskies' top doubles team of Taylor Arends and Tess Trinka tuned up for this weekend's state tournament at Prospect High School by cruising to the OPRF Sectional title with three convincing wins.
In Saturday's sectional final, they downed OPRF's No. 2 doubles team, Anna Rossa and Audrey Angelos, 6-1, 6-1.
Arends and Trinka enter this year's state tournament with an 18-2 record, along with plenty of experience gained from last year's sixth-place finish at state.
The Huskies will send a team of six players to Prospect this weekend.
"It's actually a big deal for us [qualifying six]," OPRF head coach Fred Galluzzo said. "Obviously, we know we have an excellent doubles team with Taylor and Tess, but some of our other doubles teams played well and stepped up. Hannah Gibson is a solid singles player who knows her way around the state tournament. Jasmine Owens has worked diligently for the past two years to improve her game both physically and mentally. She's a first-time state qualifier and I'm happy with her progress."
Like the heavy sectional favorite tandem of Arends/Trinka, Fenwick sophomore Laura Gutierrez also rolled through the competition to win the No. 1 singles championship at the sectional. The Friars' top singles player only dropped four games over three matches to punch her ticket to the IHSA state tournament via an impressive 6-1, 6-1 win against well-regarded Emily Uzer of Francis Parker in the sectional final. Gutierrez is 23-5 entering state.
"The [OPRF] sectional is always a great warm up for the state tournament," Gutierrez said. "I love the atmosphere because it's always very competitive. Emily [Uzer] and I had a great final with a lot of hard-hitting and plenty of variety. It was such an honest match that I couldn't feel bad, win or lose. At state, I just want to have a good run and enjoy it."
OPRF claimed the sectional team title with 31 points followed by Fenwick 24.