OAK HARBOR – Port Clinton’s Eryn Binder is familiar with her varsity spot.
The Redskins’ Libby Showalter and Taylor Steyer have varsity experience but not necessarily as partners. And Candace Smith and Meghan Gallogly are new to the varsity level.
Port Clinton shut out Oak Harbor 5-0 in the Sandusky Bay Conference on Tuesday.
Showalter and Steyer topped Libbie Greider and Shannon Binns 6-0, 6-1 at No. 1 doubles.
“Last year, there were four of us for three varsity spots, and we kind of rotated,” Steyer said. “I had Libby as a partner a few times and felt that was the best match. We’ll get better and better. It’s fun.”
Steyer anticipates the comfort level and confidence will rise.
“It keeps getting better,” she said. “We watch the opponents and find different things to (take advantage of). We help each other (with advice).”
Smith and Gallogly beat Paige Sindeldecker and Abby David 6-2, 6-1 at No. 2 doubles.
“Every match, they get more comfortable with each other so we’re seeing improvements in how they communicate together and play on the court,” Redskins coach Lindsay Dunn said. “With that experience, they’ll continue to get better.”
Binder defeated Paige Priesman 6-2, 6-2 at No. 3 singles. Binder has occupied the third singles spot the last three years.
“She has a strong shot, but she’s able to be patient and wait for the time to use it,” Dunn said.
Alyssa Krupp (No. 1 singles) and Kelsey Dietrich (No. 2 singles) each won without dropping a game for Port Clinton (2-1).
“They knew what they had to do and they got out there and did it,” Dunn said. “They played their game and did it well. They were very efficient
Krupp topped Michelle Boss and Dietrich beat Kelsey Bodnar.
“This year, I’m trying to play with more power,” Dietrich said. “I’ve worked on my down-the-line shots, and that’s what I focused on (Tuesday).”
Dietrich was ready for the season to get underway.
“I was very excited,” she said. “I’m anxious to see how we progress this year as a team. I want to stay as consistent as possible.”
Oak Harbor coach Rick LaFountain saw a few positive signs Tuesday. The Rockets are 2-2.
“Our second doubles did a good job keeping the ball in play,” he said. “Sindeldecker put the ball away a couple times at the net. Port Clinton played well, they’re a good team and they’ll be among the contenders in the league.”
LaFountain likes to see things translate from practice to matches in the early season.
“Part of it is getting comfortable,” he said. “I still see nerves but I’ve seen improvement and they work hard until the last point. Hopefully they learn and it will stick for the next match.”