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Pinciotti tops Rosen on big day

Tiffany Pinciotti barely had time to wipe away the sweat before it was time to work up another.

After playing in the state-designated tournament in Tallahassee Monday morning, Pinciotti made it back to Tampa in time for her afternoon classes. It was just enough of a break for her to catch her breath before playing her biggest tennis match of the regular season against Plant's Leslie Rosen.

No sweat. Pinciotti and King won the battle of undefeated teams 6-1. King improved to 4-0 while Plant fell to 6-1 following the non-district matchup of the county's elite.

Pinciotti avenged last season's loss to Rosen 6-2, 6-3, handing the Plant junior her first regular-season loss since her freshman year.

"She got her revenge," Rosen said. "I don't know if I could have done anything differently. I tried to keep the ball in play as much as I could, but she can run all day."

Most of it anyway. Pinciotti, a junior, advanced to the quarterfinals in the morning's junior tournament before embarking on a 4-hour trip home.

"It wasn't that fun," Pinciotti said. "I was drained."

But it's playing outside of school, Pinciotti said, that helped her avenge the 6-1, 6-3 loss to Rosen a year ago.

"It's helped my mental game," Pinciotti said. "I felt confident coming in."

King coach Carole Pressick noticed the difference in Pinciotti. "She was better prepared," Pressick said. "She was much more focused. She wanted that match."

Rosen appeared to be gaining momentum in the second set, pulling to within 3-2 after winning consecutive games. A line-call dispute on the part of Rosen later in the set seemed to rejuvenate Pinciotti.

While Pinciotti vs. Rosen was the headliner, King vs. Plant was a match of teams with talent throughout the lineup. The Lions proved to be deeper, dropping only the No. 2 doubles match.

In a mathup of seasoned No. 2 singles players, King's Marie Kennett defeated Sarah Ann Hardee 6-2, 6-1. The Lions closed out each singles match in straight sets.

"They played well," Plant coach Jeff Quick said. "This is a good learning experience."

In the final match, the Panthers' Laura Gill and Christina Drenberg rallied to defeat Kennett and Martha Carvallo 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.