Union City Lady Tornadoes Win Tennis District Title
For the 26th time in the program’s illustrious history, the Lady Tornadoes were crowned district champions following a hard-fought 4-1 decision over Obion Central Thursday.
School Communications Director Mike Hutchens said Dani Frankum’s three-set comeback victory over Obion County’s Hannah Taylor, in a match that lasted two hours and 40 minutes, clinched the fourth consecutive district crown.
Frankum lost the first set (4-6), won the second (6-4), and then fell behind 4-0 in the deciding set.
She was two points away from dropping the match, down 5-2 and love-30, before mounting her improbable rally that saw her win five consecutive games with timely shot-making after a number of long rallies.
“That’s who she is. She’s a bulldog who doesn’t have any quit in her,” Union City head coach Tom Sisco said of Frankum after her marathon match. “She fights and claws for every point, and she’s always been that way.”
The Lady Tornadoes, who won their fourth straight match to improve to (11-7), will now move on to the Region 7-A Tournament next Thursday, hosting the winner of the District 14 event with a spot in the sectional round at stake.
Thursday’s winner-take-all match against Obion Central was necessary to decide the district champion, after the two squads had split a pair of regular season matchups.
And Union City got off to a quick start behind the dominating play of its top two seeds, juniors Shelby Bondurant and Molly Kizer.
Both blitzed their opponents 6-0 in the opening set, with Kizer then completing her shutout of Emma Heathcott with an identical second set. Bondurant finished off Elizabeth Woody 6-2 to win her match and give the Lady Twisters a 2-0 lead.
“Molly and Shelby just flat-out dominated… that’s what they’re capable of,” Sisco added. “They’ve had some periods where they were a little inconsistent during the regular season, but we saw today truly who they can be. Their play early really set the tone for us.”
Third-seed Davey Frankum put Union City on the verge of victory with its third match win, as she twice broke the service of gritty Taylor Warren, while claiming the final three games of the third set to win 6-0, 2-6, 6-3.
Obion Central did not go down without a fight, as Hannah Strauser edged Union City’s Bertie Jenkins 6-3, 2-6, 6-4 to extend the match before Dani Frankum’s heroics.
The loss ended the most successful season in Obion County High School history for the Lady Rebels with a (12-2) record.