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Central York's Peters-Washington rolls to York-Adams Class AAA girls' tennis singles title

DICK VanO'LINDA
YorkDispatch


HANOVER — Yvonne Peters-Washington's performance in the York-Adams League Class AAA girls' tennis singles title match was unlike anything that her coach, Brad Andrews, had witnessed all season.

"That's the best I've seen her play," Andrews said after the Central York senior won the championship with a 6-0, 6-1 victory over New Oxford's Dagney Markle. "Her backhands were right on point and her serve, today, she was going after it (ace or service winner) instead of just getting it in. Plus her forehand is a weapon. She played like the type of player I heard she was when I found out she was coming here (to Central)"

Peters-Washington, who transferred to Central this year from State College High School, won every one of her matches in the regular season and then swept five tournament opponents without dropping a set. The senior standout closed her dominating run by pounding eight service winners and five aces in the final against Markle, who outlasted Laura Zielinski of Northeastern, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, in a 2 1/2-hour semifinal.

"She (Markle) played well, even though the scores don't show it," " Peters-Washington said.

Peters-Washington entered the tournament seeded No. 1 and handled all challenges to claim the title in what will be her only appearance in the event.

"You step it up as the tournament goes on," she said. "The mental part of my game was good in the final, and the best part of my game was my backhand."

Peters-Washington wasn't happy with missed serves and five double faults, and she planned to work on that part of her game. Overall, though, she was happy after crossing off the first goal on her list of lofty goals.

"I want to win states (she reached the quarterfinals last year while playing for State College), our team wants to reach at least the first round of states and Jenn (Elder) and I are going to win doubles."

Class AA: While Peters-Washington was collecting AAA gold, Delone Catholic's Alyssa Neudecker captured her first AA singles crown.

Neudecker won a duel of Alyssas, besting Kennard-Dale's Alyssa Miller, 6-1, 6-4. Miller, who placed third last year, moved up one place this season. Neudecker dominated the first set, but Miller played much better in the second set and led, 3-2, before the Delone junior won four of the last five games. Miller, a senior, made some adjustments between sets which allowed her to push Neudecker in the second set.

"My coaches helped me with that (in the meeting between sets)," she said. "They helped me with my choice of shots. In the second set, I was slicing my shots and hitting them deeper."

Miller complimented Neudecker on her play.

"She hits hard and angles her shots. I'm very happy to get second," she said.

Third-place matches: Zielinski bested Dallastown's Christie Friedrich, 6-1, 6-2, in the AAA third-place match, and Bermudian Springs' Brooke Yurick took third in AA with a 6-2, 2-6, 6-3 victory over Biglerville's Morgan Orndorff.

Zielinski took on Friedrich following the marathon match vs. Markle in the semifinals. There was a half-hour break between the matches.

"I used to run cross country, so I have endurance," Zielinski said. "I told myself, I lost one match (the semifinal), but I'm not going to lose a second one. It would have been a closer match, but she (Friedrich) wasn't as warmed up as I was. (Friedrich had a much longer wait than Zielinski between the semifinal and final).

The top three finishers in each bracket earned automatic berths into the District 3 singles tournaments.

— Reach Dick VanO'Linda at sports@yorkdispatch.com.