UP Takes Fifth Straight Title
SANFORD -- For the fifth straight season, Union Pines' girls tennis team is Cape Fear Valley Conference champion.
The Lady Vikings claimed the regular season championship with a 9-0 victory over Southern Lee Thursday to finish 10-0 in conference matches.
Senior Neena Wanka, the 2008 3A individual state runner-up, collected two wins Thursday to improve her Union Pines career record to 93-4 over three seasons. Fellow senior Jordan Smith also tallied a pair of wins and is now 92-11 as a Lady Vike.
In their 11 matches this season Union Pines has notched 10 shutout victories and only lost one individual match, compiling a combined team mark of 96-1.
"Right now we really like where we are at as a team," said Viking head coach John Frye, "and we have made strong strides in recent weeks to become a good tennis team. We are really starting to place the ball with precision and are striking it much sharper with added pace."
Soon enough, Frye and his Lady Vikes will be shifting their focus to the postseason. But not before they play at rival Pinecrest Monday.
The nonconference contest should prove to be a competitive match for both squads as they gear up for tougher competition in the playoffs.
Wednesday, Union Pines will begin play in the three-day Cape Fear Valley Conference championship, which is being hosted at O.T. Sloan Park in Sanford with the finals occurring Friday.
Wanko will be looking to claim her third conference player of the year honor at the championship. She comes into the event as the defending singles champion.
Meanwhile Smith, who earned all-conference honors last season, enters the tournament as a defending conference doubles champion. Last year Smith paired with then senior Anna Maness to take the 2008 crown.
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