For three hours Wednesday, Countryside’s Angel Deng pushed herself to the limit of human endurance. She staggered. She wilted.
But she kept playing until it was no longer a tennis match, but a test of will.
Deng, a freshman, found a way to pull through in a 7-6, 5-7, 6-0 victory in the quarterfinals of No. 1 individual singles at the Class 4A state meet at Lake Brantley High School. But she had to play an hour later and didn’t have much left for the semifinals, falling 6-3, 6-3.
“(Deng) was drained after that first match,” Countryside coach Jason Franzen said. “She had to come back pretty quick after that first match and was feeling a little sick.”
Deng bounced back in No. 1 doubles, teaming with Alex Kitchen to win 6-0, 5-7, 6-0 in the quarterfinals. The two will play today in the semifinals at 9 a.m. at Sanlando Park in Altamonte Springs.
Class 4A boys: St. Petersburg’s Edward Corty won his quarterfinal match at No. 1 individual singles 6-3, 6-2 before losing in the semifinals 4-6, 6-1, 6-1. Corty and Robert Dvorak won their quarterfinal at No. 1 doubles 6-1, 6-2 to advance to today’s semifinals at Sanlando Park at 9.
Class 2A girls: Osceola’s Jade Smith powered her way to a 6-1, 6-0 quarterfinal victory in No. 1 individual singles. Smith then faced top-seeded Lindsay Graff of Fort Lauderdale Pine Crest in the semifinals. Graff dominated the match, winning 6-2, 6-0.
At No. 1 doubles, Smith and sister Jayla lost 6-3, 6-1 in the quarterfinals.