G.P. South Completes Title Mission

May 31, 2014

By Scott Keyes
Special to Second Half

MIDLAND – From the flustered feeling of not knowing how bad the elements were going to be to start the season, to the snow showers that hit the courts during late April, the Grosse Pointe South girls tennis team prepared for everything as this rugged season began to take shape.

The results showed.

The No. 1-ranked team in Lower Peninsula Division 1 all season proved why as the Devils earned their second MHSAA LP Division 1 championship in three seasons with a convincing victory Saturday afternoon at the Midland Tennis Center.

Grosse Pointe South had 28 points, followed by Clarkston with 22 and Bloomfield Hills and Northville with 19 each. Port Huron Northern was fifth with 16 points.

"We knew what he had coming into this season after last year's third-place finish," Grosse Pointe South coach Mark Sobieralski said. "The girls came into this season on a mission. They kept improving every time they hit the court. It's always nice to win a state title, but this championship is extra special for the entire team. From the newcomers to the veterans, everyone on the team played a key role in making this happen. I couldn't be prouder."

Grosse Pointe South clinched the championship early, having earned multiple points in every flight Friday – and winning all four of their three-set matches that day.

"Last year we may have lost them because of the lack of experience," Sobieralski said. "The kids really grew up this season."

At No. 1 singles, Utica's Davina Nguyen defeated Clarkston’s Lexi Baylis, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 in the championship match that was worth the price of admission.

A year ago Baylis lost in the final to Saline’s Mary Hanna, while Nguyen was ousted in the semifinal by Baylis.

This time, Baylis (headed to Michigan State University) blitzed Nguyen in the first set, 6-2, but Nguyen rebounded to win, 6-3, 6-4, to claim her second high school singles title.

Nguyen admitted the win was extremely gratifying, defeating someone of Baylis' caliber.

"On that last point I knew I needed to finish it then because I couldn't feel my hand at all during that last point," Nguyen said. "It was crazy. I lost to her last year, and to be able to gain a little redemption is pretty gratifying. My mindset coming in was the same as it was my freshman year when I won the state championship. I knew Lexi was going to give it her all, and to get the win is pretty amazing."

Besides winning the team title, Grosse Pointe South also had two individual flight winners on the day.

Maddie Paolucci defeated Elaina Parrillo (Midland Dow), 6-4, 6-2, at No. 4 singles, while the No. 4 doubles team of Ginny Hayden and Kelly Beardslee defeated Libby Quinn and Chloe Page (Northville), 6-2, 6-4.

Grosse Pointe South also reached the finals in two other flights but finished runners-up. Willard lost to Clarkston's Dana Olsen, 6-2, 6-1, while Sydney Keller and Morgane Flournoy lost to Amy Tseng and Maggie Bacheller (Port Huron Northern) at No. 2 doubles, 6-2, 6-2.

Raven Neely (No. 1 singles) and Angelica Kalogeridis and Jennifer Moy (No. 3 doubles) were semifinalists for Grosse Pointe South.

Parrillo wasn't the only Dow player that made it into the finals. Bloomfield Hills' Kerry Hu defeated Chargers freshman Caroline Szabo at No. 2 singles, 7-5, 6-3.

Dow coach Garrett Turner was impressed by the efforts of his team during the tournament.

"The future is definitely bright," Turner said. "In the finals Caroline ran out of gas, but she has nothing to hang her head about. We had a great tournament, and the kids will learn from this experience heading into next season."

Click for full results.

PHOTOS: (Top) Grosse Pointe South raises its championship trophy Saturday afternoon at the Midland Tennis center. (Middle) Utica’s Davina Nguyen sends a shot during a No. 1 singles match en route to winning the flight. (Click to see more at HighSchoolsSportsScene.com.)

Performance of the Week: Holland's Ahava Le Febre

May 19, 2023

Holland Ahava LeFebreAhava Le Febre ♦ Holland
Freshman ♦ Tennis

Le Febre finished an undefeated run through Ottawa-Kent Conference Green competition by winning the No. 2 singles flight at Friday's league tournament and helping Holland to its first conference title since 2006 as the Dutch scored 45 points, just one more than runners-up Zeeland East and Muskegon Mona Shores. Le Febre had entered the tournament as the top seed at her flight. 

The Le Febre family actually occupies the top two singles spots for Holland, as senior sister Libby Le Febre plays No. 1 and finished runner-up at that flight Friday. Their older brother Thadd was part of Holland's Division 2 boys soccer championship team in 2017. Ahava Le Febre is 18-4 this season and has won 11 straight matches, and her team capped its dual season this week at 16-3-1 and will play in the Lower Peninsula Division 2 Regional on Saturday at Portage Central. 

@mhsaasports 🎾POW: Ahava Le Febre #performanceoftheweek #tennis #2singles #league #okgreen #conferencechamp #champions #holland #dutch #MHSAA #highschoolsports #tiktalk #interview #TikTok#mistudentaid #fyp ♬ original sound - MHSAA

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MHSAA.com's "Performance of the Week" features are powered by MI Student Aid, a part of the Office of Postsecondary Financial Planning located within the Michigan Department of Treasury. MI Student Aid encourages students to pursue postsecondary education by providing access to student financial resources and information. MI Student Aid administers the state’s 529 college savings programs (MET/MESP), as well as scholarship and grant programs that help make college Accessible, Affordable and Attainable for you. Connect with MI Student Aid at www.michigan.gov/mistudentaid and find more information on Facebook and Twitter @mistudentaid.

2022-23 Honorees

May 11: Gracie Maloney, Macomb Dakota softball - Report
May 4:
Braxton Brann, Ann Arbor Huron track & field - Report
April 27:
Owen Patton, Vestaburg track & field - Report
April 20:
Lilly Damm, Millington softball - Report
April 13:
Larissa Huffman, Mackinaw City track & field - Report
April 6:
Darius Acuff, Detroit Cass Tech basketball - Report
March 23:
Regan Finkbeiner, Hemlock basketball - Report
March 16:
Alaina Yaney, Grand Ledge gymnastics - Report
March 9:
Braeden Davis, Dundee wrestling - Report
March 2:
Gabriel Sanchez-Burks, Ann Arbor Pioneer swimming - Report
Feb. 23:
Grace Sobczak, Marquette swimming - Report
Feb. 16:
Kaitlynn Demers, Gibraltar Carlson competitive cheer - Report
Feb. 9:
Indya Davis, West Bloomfield basketball - Report
Feb. 2:
Braydon Sorenson, Onekama skiing - Report
Jan. 26:
Shayna Hruska, Iron Mountain wrestling - Report
Jan. 19:
Kayla Tafanelli, Warren Woods-Tower bowling - Report
Dec. 20:
Brenden Paden, Riverview Gabriel Richard hockey - Report
Dec. 16:
Tuff Scott, Holton bowling - Report
Dec. 9:
Macey Fegan, Standish-Sterling basketball - Report
Dec. 2:
Treyton Siegert, Gladwin football - Report
Nov. 24:
Lily Witte, Dexter diving - Report
Nov. 17:
Navea Gauthier, Shelby volleyball - Report
Nov. 10:
Derek Huisman, Holland Christian soccer - Report
Nov. 3:
Thomas Westphal, New Baltimore Anchor Bay cross country - Report
Oct. 27:
Justin Wickey, Colon football - Report
Oct. 20:
Owen DeMuth, Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood tennis - Report
Oct. 13:
Mia Melendez, Ann Arbor Greenhills golf - Report
Oct. 6:
Shawn Foster, Grand Ledge football - Report
Sept. 30:
Hannah Smith, Temperance Bedford swimming - Report
Sept. 22:
Helen Sachs, Holland West Ottawa cross country - Report
Sept. 15:
Nina Horning, Lake Orion volleyball - Report
Sept 8:
Arturo Romero, Muskegon Oakridge soccer - Report
Sept. 1:
Austin King, Midland Dow tennis - Report
Aug. 25:
Olivia Hemmila, Troy Athens golf - Report

PHOTOS by Jason Craner (action) and Sarah LeFebre (head shot).