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Croker powers way to District 2 title

Scranton Prep junior, Old Forge resident wins Class 2A title

Above, Pittston Area’s Miranda Warunek hits a shot against Holy Redeemer’s Nellie Chmil.

At top, Pittston Area’s Haleigh Zurek eyes the corner against Holy Redeemer’s Emily Suchocki. Above, Ali Quinn reaches for a ball in a doubles match.

Scranton Prep’s Kendra Croker slices a backhand against Fallyn Boich of Holy Redeemer in the District 2 Girls Class 2A tennis semifinals Friday afternoon at Kirby Park. Croker went on to win the District 2 Class 2A title.

photos by BILL TARUTIS

As a sophomore, Kendra Croker - Scranton Prep’s top tennis player - lost a heartbreaker in last year’s District 2 Class 2A tennis championship match.

She wasn’t about to let another opportunity get past her.

The Old Forge resident used a powerful ground game to knockoff Wyoming Seminary freshman Nathalie Joanlanne, 6-2, 6-4, to capture the 2011 District 2 Class 2A title on Friday afternoon an Kirby Park in Wilkes-Barre. The victory qualifies the Classics’ junior for the PIAA Championship Tournament later this month.

Croker won the first nine points of the game to go up a break and take an early lead. Joanlanne battled back to tie the match at 2-2, but Croker responded with another break and used the momentum to win the next four games and the first set, 6-2.

In the second set, both players exchanged winners and each broke once to stand tied at 4-4. But Croker again finished strong, winning the final two games to take the crown.

Croker, the top-seed, began the tournament with an opening round victory over Wyoming Area’s Lisa Chihorek, 6-2, 6-0. Chihorek won a play-in match against MMI Prep’s Englysh Handlong, 6-1, 6-2. Croker then dispatched of Melissa Tucker of Dallas, 6-0, 6-1, in the second round before sweeping Kaitlin Barno of Valley View, 6-0, 6-0 on Thursday afternoon.

In Friday’s semifinal, Croker beat Holy Redeemer’s Fallyn Boich, 6-1, 6-0.

District Tourney rundown

Wyoming Area’s Valerie Bott joined Chihorek at the D2 Class 2A championships but unfortunately drew third-seeded Emily Walsh of Scranton Prep.

Bott dropped a two-set match to Walsh, 6-1, 6-0. Walsh went on to reach the tourney semis before falling to Joanlanne.

Pittston Area was represented at the District 2 Class 3A Tournament by top player Anna Podrasky and Miranda Warunek.

Podrasky opened the tournament against sixth-seeded Maggie Manchester of Williamsport and lost 6-1, 6-1.

Warunek faced eight-seeded Jenna Lutchko of Coughlin in the first round and fell, 6-0, 6-1.

PA 1, Coughlin 4

Anna Podrasky defeated Jenna Lutchko 6-4, 6-3, at No. 1 Singles to give Pittston Area its only point in a 4-1 loss to Coughlin in a WVC tennis match on Wednesday afternoon in Wilkes-Barre.

It was the fifth individual victory of the season for Podrasky.

PA 0, Holy Redeemer 5

Pittston Area dropped a 5-0 decision to once-beaten Holy Redeemer in a WVC Tennis match on Tuesday afternoon at the Martin L. Mattei Middle School Courts.

Anna Podrasky gave the Lady Patriots the best chance for a point, in a hard-fought, 6-4, 6-4 loss to Fallyn Boich at No. 1 Singles.

WA 0, Seminary 5

Wyoming Area played tough in both doubles matches but was unable to come up with a point in a 5-0 loss to once-beaten Wyoming Seminary in a WVC Tennis match on Tuesday afternoon in Kingston.

The team of Alicia Pizano and Julia Gober lost a close, 7-5, 6-1 match at No. 2 Doubles, and Alex Romano and Lisa Chihorek lost at No.1 Doubles by a score of 7-6 (3), 6-3.

WA 2, MMI Prep 3

Wyoming Area lost a tough 3-2 decision to MMI Prep in WVC Tennis action on Monday afternoon in Freeland.

Lisa Chihorek won a point playing No. 2 Singles for the Lady Warriors, defeating Englysh Handlong, in straight sets, 6-2, 6-3.

Alex Romano and Brina Platt won the other point for Wyoming Area (2-5) at No. 2 doubles, winning 6-1, 6-1.

Emily Lukasavage lost a tough three-set match at No. 3 Singles for the Lady Warriors, 6-1, 3-6, 6-1.

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