For 19 consecutive years, the Baldwinsville girls tennis team had to watch as Fayetteville-Manlius took sole ownership of the Section III Class A championship and built a 312-match win streak.
Finally, the Bees had a chance to do something about it when it met the Hornets in Wednesday’s Class A final at Mott Tennis Center in Utica, and while it got close, the Bees still fell short by a point, 4-3, as F-M made it 20 in a row.
The memory of their Sept. 7 classic, claimed by F-M 4-3 when Sienna Susko escaped two match points and rallied past Kahlei Reisinger in a third-set tie-breaker, was still fresh for both B’ville and F-M, adding to the tension.
Only there would not be a rematch between Reisinger and Susko, since the latter was put in doubles. Left to herself, Reisinger blew past Meaghan Creamer 6-0, 6-0, while Amari Pollard, half of the sectional Division I championship doubles team with Natalie Kot, went on her own and defeated Allison Donella 6-4, 6-2.
Where B’ville got hurt was in doubles. Three times, the Hornets won in straight sets, the Bees only earning a point when Lauren Dusse and Maddie Quilter took out Maggie Bonomo and Madison Jordan 6-2, 6-1.
Kot, paired this time with Taylor Ferrari, lost, 6-4, 6-0, to Susko and Alexandra Millimaci. Emma Funicello and Hannah Mautz went longer, but fell to Lyndsey Rand and Katie Roche 7-5, 6-2, with Madeline Fiello and Katherine Schumacher falling to Laurin Goldberg and Jessie Guarino 6-0, 6-1. Taylor Slink dropped her singles match to the Hornets’ Shirley Zhang.
To get that second shot at F-M, the Bees first had to navigate through last Monday’s Class A semifinal against Auburn, where a strong all-around effort produced a 5-2 victory over the Maroons.
Auburn stuck its singles superstar, Claire Minnoe, into doubles with Jessica Bolak, and together the pair beat Ferrari and Kot 6-0, 6-0.