Tennessee Headed To College World Series Title Game After 4-1 Win Over Aggies

Walker Valley's Collins Looking For State Tennis Championship

  • Sunday, May 19, 2024
Walker Valley's Ensley Collins
Walker Valley's Ensley Collins
photo by Contributed

A familiar name will claim the title of TSSAA Region 3 individual tennis champion and represent Southeast Tennessee in Murfreesboro at the Spring Fling next week.  Walker Valley senior Ensley Collins repeated as Region 3 Champion, claiming two wins in the Region 3 singles event hosted at Hixson High School on Monday.  

Looking for another opportunity at an individual state championship, last year’s Division I-AA State Runner Up secured her fourth consecutive ticket to Murfreesboro with wins over Soddy Daisy’s Leah Daniels in the semi-finals and McMinn County’s Hannah Davis in the finals.  “I’m really thankful for Coach Coates and our team of girls.  The team has been so supportive and encouraging and I couldn’t be happier to represent them next week.”

In the semi-final match, Collins was sharp throughout using a combination of big serves and heavy forehands to end points quickly and earn a 6-0, 6-0 straight sets victory.  “Ensley has continued to build her confidence throughout the season.  She’s such a hard worker and sometimes her own biggest critic.” Mustang Coach Eddie Coates shared about his top player.  “We are just working to keep her confidence high from start to finish and she did that all day.”

The finals match was the same recipe for Collins who used her forehand to dictate play throughout the match while mixing in a variety of serves to close the door on her Cherokee opponent and finish the match 6-2, 6-0.  “I’m happy to play well today and hope to be at my best next week for the state tournament.”

Collins, an Anderson University signee, will be one of eight individuals that earn a spot in the TSSAA individual state tournament beginning next week for both team and individual play.  “Tennis is a tough sport for a lot of reasons so I’m hopefull to be at my best mentallly and physically next week.  In the end, I just want to play confident no matter what.” Collins remarked about her TSSAA state tournament bid.  

With a 22-0 singles record this season and a combined record of 42-1 her junior and senior seasons, Collins will open the TSSAA tournament in a rematch of last year’s State Championship match facing Farragut High School’s Riley Cassity.

“It’s a shame the draw matched up this way.” Coates shared, “but it presents a great opportunity for Ensley.” 

“I’m looking forward to college tennis and the next step but I would love to finish junior tennis on a high note.” Collins remarked. 

TSSAA individual play begins Thursday, May 23 at the Adams Tennis Center in Murfreesboro.  

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