Second chance for the big dance
Last second field goals, walk off home runs, three pointers at the buzzer are usually permanent.
Tennis is a little different.
Seizing the opportunity for another chance at state, Ginny Flores and Nick Gonzalez took full advantage and captured a play-in match to earn a trip to the UIL state tennis tournament.
Having just lost in the regional finals, the Tiger mixed double team dispatched Amber Noble and Kamden Lucas of Center 6-3, 6-3 Tuesday afternoon on a perfect sun-filled day at the Class 3A, Region III Tournament at Bryan High School.
The dy na mic duo a re t he first mixed doubles team from Rockdale to ever appear at state.
They are also the first Tiger netters to make a state tournament appearance since the doubles team of Matt Sanders and Kurt Griesbach in 2004.
The Class 3A state tournament will be held Monday, March 30 and Tuesday, April 1 at the Penick-Allison Tennis Center on the campus of the University of Texas.
Flores and Gonzalez will play their quarterfinals match at 12:30 Nick Gonzalez and Ginny Flores are the first mixed doubles team from Rockdale to play in the UIL state tennis tournament, to be held April 30 and March 1.
STATE TENNIS TOURNAMENT
What— Class 3A State Tennis Tournament When— Monday-Tuesday, April 30-March 1. Gonzalez and Flores play at 12:30 p.m. on Monday. Where— Penick- Allison Tennis Center. Participants—8 teams
p.m. on Monday, April 30. Semifinals will be held at 3 p.m. on Monday and finals at 9 a.m. on Tuesday.
“It took a lot of pushing,” said Rockdale Coach Sarah Warner. “ Nick and Ginny had to push themselves further than they have all year to get the points that count and hit their targets. They played many great matches and just weren’t able to pull it together at the finals match.”
The Tigers had to overcome some adversities as well.
On Monday night, Flores accidently got her hand smashed in a car door and had to work through the pain.
In the 6- 4, 6- 3 f inals loss against Bellville’s Trey Bonilla and Daniella Lowe, the duo jumped out 3-0 in the first set, only to watch as the fiery Bonilla and partner Lowe reeled off five unanswered games en route to a 6-4 win.
The Tigers jumped out again 1-0 in the second set which was tied 2-2 before Bellville embarked on another streak before winning 6-3.
The couple breezed through the first three rounds of the tournament, disposing of Reed Rabalais and Maggie Nix of Hamshire- Fannett, 6-2, 6-3; Madisonville’s Cassidy Andrews and Kyle Underwood, 6-2, 6-4; and in the semifinals, Ross Reynolds and Ashton Lucas of Center, 6-3, 6-1.