After failing to win a single title in last year's Region I tennis championship, Frederick County took two in Saturday's final round at Middletown High School.
Allegany County's Mountain Ridge won the team title. The Miners finished with 12 points, while second-place Walkersville had 10. Tuscarora finished third, its best showing in program history, with seven points.
Frederick High freshman No. 1 singles player Bridget Blowe and the Walkersville boys No. 1 doubles team of Tim Anderson and Matt Guyton won championship matches. Both region finals were rematches of last week's Frederick County tournament finals with the same results.
Blowe defeated Tuscarora junior Ana Chernova Saturday, this time in three sets. Guyton and Anderson defeated Tuscarora twin brothers Nathan and Tyler Homon in another three-set match.
Maryland public high school tennis is divided into eight regions. Each region sends two representatives in each bracket — boys and girls singles, boys and girls doubles and mixed doubles — to the season-ending state tournament scheduled for Memorial Day weekend at the University of Maryland, College Park.
Region I consists of teams from Frederick, Allegany and Washington counties.
Frederick County had at least one finalist in each bracket. All the players who made it to Saturday's final round qualified for the state championship. “[Saturday's] win was [sweeter] because I think Ana was trying harder and was playing better,” Blowe said. “It's really exciting to win [regionals] especially being a freshman. I'm really excited for the state tournament. I'm hoping to do well, maybe get to the semifinals. I think I'll know a lot of players from [U.S. Tennis Association] tournaments.”
Mountain Ridge senior No. 1 singles player Jacob Bittner won his second consecutive region title Saturday, in straight sets against Urbana No. 1 Edward Yoon, who won last week's Frederick County singles title.
Mountain Ridge's Kayla Kirk and Kaitlin Lemmert defeated Frederick County girls champions Julia Ashe and Andrea Gough.
Mollie Johnson and Max Ober of Washington County's North Hagerstown defeated Oakdale's Michelle Rizk and Karl Sasse in the mixed doubles final.
“[Yoon's] forehand is much stronger than his backhand, so I tried to hit a lot more toward that side,” Bittner said. “I kept returning the ball and tried to let him make the errors. It feels good to win another region title. I'm a senior so it's nice to go out on a top.”