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Senators return from break with big victory

Connor Henderson rises high above the net to return a shot in a doubles match against Lee-Scott Monday. Henderson and teammate Peyton Mathiews defeated the Volunteers team of Sam Bridges and Jackson Aldridge 6-0, 6-1. The Senators will play again Tuesday against Monroe Academy.--Daniel Evans

Connor Henderson rises high above the net to return a shot in a doubles match against Lee-Scott Monday. Henderson and teammate Peyton Mathiews defeated the Volunteers team of Sam Bridges and Jackson Aldridge 6-0, 6-1. The Senators will play again Tuesday against Monroe Academy.–Daniel Evans

With the AISA state tennis tournament only fifteen days away and looming large, the Morgan Academy Senators used Monday’s match with Lee-Scott Academy to refocus after a week off for spring break.

The boys won in dominating fashion, sweeping every singles and doubles match against the Warriors, while the girls squeaked out a 3-2 win in the singles. Senators head coach Baxter Stinson was happy with the way his team played on their first day focused on tennis in over a week.

“[Spring break] is always a challenge because our spring lies in the middle of our season and then we have two weeks until state,” Stinson said. “We lose a lot of the progress we’ve made and have to try to get it back in two weeks.”

In the boys’ matches, Morgan’s Peyton Matthiews defeated Sam Bridges 6-0, 6-2 in a battle of each team’s No. 1 players.

Connor Henderson shut out Jackson Aldridge 6-0, 6-0 to give the Senators another win and Will Sherrer kept the momentum going with a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Sam Aldridge. Morgan’s Elliot Oslund defeated Matthew Sanders 6-1, 6-0 and Jordan Cothran defeated Bo Dean 6-0, 6-0 to wrap up a perfect performance for the Senators’ boys.

Mathiews and Henderson teamed up to defeat Bridges and Jackson 6-0, 6-1 in doubles and Sherrer and Cothran followed suit with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Aldridge and Dean.

Stinson said the wins were important because it will help the Senators when they get to the AISA state tournament, which is held April 14-15 at Lagoon Park in Montgomery.

“The more wins you have on your record, the higher your seed will be at state,” Stinson said. “That creates an easier road to the finals, so every win is important.”

The Lady Senators didn’t have as easy of a time with the Volunteers, but they still found a way to come out on top in the team standings.

Morgan’s Sophie Talton defeated Mary Lendon Whatley 7-5, 6-2, Annie Talton defeated Kathryn Fuller 6-0, 6-1 and Haley Matthiews defeated Mary Grace Spraybury 7-5, 3-6, 11-9 to give the Senators their three wins. Emily Sherrer fell to Bailey Beckwith 4-6, 1-6 and Ellie Adams fell to Rebekah Nasib 4-6, 3-6.

In the doubles, Sherrer and Sophie Talton lost to Beckwith and Madon 6-7, 6-2, 6-10 and Annie Talton and Adams defeated Whatley and Fuller 6-4, 6-3.

With their win, the Morgan boys moved to 7-2 and the Senators’ girls are 7-4. Stinson said his team appears to be peaking as the state tournament draws closer.

“Our whole team philosophy is to get better every day,” Stinson said. “When we played Tuscaloosa, one of their parents couldn’t believe how much better we’d gotten in two weeks. That’s our whole deal, to be peaking when we get to state.”

Morgan Academy’s next match is against Monroe Academy Tuesday at home at 2:30 p.m.