Ella Riddle makes quick work of her opponents to claim the TRL district singles title

by: VERN UYETAKE - Ella Riddle readies to hit a backhand during last week's district tournament.Ella Riddle made an immediate impact for the Lions this year after moving to West Linn from England. She dominated the competition in the Three Rivers League, earning the top seed at districts.

At the two-day tournament last week, Riddle appeared to be playing some of her best tennis of the season, which is saying something, as she has appeared to play every bit the part of a state title contender all season.

Riddle was barely tested in five matches and steamrolled through the singles bracket in one of the more competitive leagues in the state.

Riddle dropped a total of four games in those matches, overwhelming her opponents with her strong ground strokes and serving.

She advanced to the semifinals, dropping just one game in a trio of quick straight sets victories.

Then, in the semis, she quickly dispatched the No. 4 seed in the tournament, Lake Oswego's No. 2 singles player, 6-0, 6-0.

In the finals, Riddle took on Kali McCollister from Grant, who was coming off a tough three-set decision in her semifinal match.

Again, it didn't take Riddle long to complete the sweep and pick up the title, winning the match 6-1, 6-0.

Riddle will now gear up for a run at a state title May 16-18 at Tualatin Hills and Portland Tennis Center.

West Linn knew it would be difficult to get much more than its top singles player through to state this year in strong singles and doubles brackets.

The Lions' No. 2 singles player, Becca Cruze, won her first two matches in straight sets before falling to No. 2 seed Katie Day from Lake Oswego.

In doubles, West Linn's top team of Nicole Campbell and Macie Coronel knew they would need to pull a minor upset to advance to state, having been given the No. 5 seed in the tournament.

The team won easily in its opening match and then ground out a tough 6-2, 7-5 match over a Lakeridge pair in the second round.

In the quarterfinals, Campbell and Coronel took on the No. 4 seed from Clackamas and dropped a competitive match 6-4, 6-3.

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