Notre Dame Girls Tennis Team Headed to State

Defeated Boyd Buchanan, 4-2

Thursday, May 15, 2014 - by B.B Branton

It came down to a matter of wills and a few extra well placed shots in a D-I A-AA state quarterfinals (sectionals) girls’ tennis match Wednesday.

Starting play at 2:30 p.m. on the outdoor courts at the Champions Club and finishing on the McCallie indoor courts at 6:45 p.m. due to a late afternoon rain shower, the Notre Dame girls outlasted Boyd Buchanan, 4-2, and earned a spot in the Spring Fling state tournament next week in Murfreesboro.

The Region 4 champion Irish (15-1) took a quick 2-0 lead with straight set wins by Sarah Joyce (No.1) and Sarah Faith Ingell (No.3) and looked headed to victory without playing doubles (5 singles- 2 doubles playoff format) with first set wins at Nos. 4 and 5.

But the Region 3 Bucs (11-3) would have no part of a singles sweep as individual region singles champion Katie Delay posted a straight set win of her own at No.2 to make it 2-1.

Notre Dame’s Mary Margaret Haywood pushed the lead to 3-1 with a 6-4, 7-5 win at No.4 as all eyes then turned to the final singles match at No.5.

The Bucs’ Shelby Brown then rallied for a nearly three hour, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 victory to make it 3-2 in Notre Dame’s favor and sent the match to doubles.

The rain stopped the Brown-Katie Lamsey match late in the third set sending it and the two doubles matches to McCallie at 5:15 p.m.

The Irish then clinched its second trip to Spring Fling in three years at No.2 doubles as Ingell-Haywood defeated Paige Zumbrun-Christina Amos, 8-2, for the fourth team point and the win.

“It was a heck of a match, Boyd Buchanan played well and we are thrilled to be going back to the state tournament,” said Notre Dame head coach Nancy Fox whose team won the state title in 2012.

State Champs: Notre Dame hopes to make it a three-peat for the Region3-Region 4 winner who has state championship trophies in 2012 (Notre Dame) and 2013 (Chattanooga Christian).

“We played tough today as we took the sectional match to doubles for the first time in four years,” said second year Boyd Buchanan coach Mikki Brown. “We take a step forward each season and keep improving.”

Strong Four Years: Boyd Buchanan is 57-9 the past four years, with four district and four region titles …. The Bucs lost to the eventual state champion in the sectional finals in 2012 and 2013.

Tough Foes: Notre Dame’s only loss is to 2013 D-II state runner-up GPS, while the Bucs’ three losses are to GPS, defending A-AA state champ Chattanooga Christian and 2012 A-AA state champ Notre Dame.

Notre Dame Girls 4, Boyd Buchanan 2

Sarah Joyce (ND) def. McKenna Thomas, 6-0, 6-1

Katie Delay (BBS) def. Danika Dorris, 6-4, 6-3

Sarah Faith Ingell (ND) def. Paige Zumbrun, 6-1, 6-0

Mary Margaret Haywood (ND) def. Christina Amos, 6-4, 7-5

Shelby Brown (BBS) def. Katie Lamsey, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3


Ingell-Haywood (ND) def. Zumbrun-Amos, 8-2

Records: Notre Dame 15-1, Boyd Buchanan 11-3

contact B.B. Branton at

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