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Titans senior Ceyda Durmaz beats Abingdon's Emily Henderson for the regional singles title.
Saturday, June 1, 2013
BLACKSBURG — What a difference a little over a week can make.
Just eight days after losing to Abingdon’s Emily Henderson in the Region IV team tennis finals, Hidden Valley’s Ceyda Durmaz avenged the loss with a 6-1, 6-2 triumph over Henderson in the Region IV singles finals on Friday at Virginia Tech.
On May 23, Henderson topped Durmaz 6-1, 6-1, but the Titans rallied for a 5-3 team victory over Abingdon. Durmaz, however, played that match with what she described as a “slight fever.”
“My head was pounding that day. It felt like it would explode,” Durmaz said.
Durmaz took immediate charge of Friday’s match in the first game by breaking Henderson’s serve. She was aided by back-to-back double faults by Henderson to start the match.
“My consistency wasn’t as good today as it was last week,” Henderson said.
After rolling through the first set, Durmaz was challenged on her serve in the second set’s opening game. Henderson had three break point opportunities, but Durmaz fought them off and cruised on to the title.
Hidden Valley’s boys coach Ryan Teague was substituting Friday for girls coach Lindy Stetson, who was attending a wedding.
Even though he doesn’t work with Durmaz full time, Teague said he was impressed with her strategy.
“She was definitely being patient and waiting for the right moment,” Teague said. “She had a very patient game plan today.”
The victory is another high point in Durmaz’s season, which is her first back with Hidden Valley since spending the past two years playing at the Johan Kriek Tennis Academy in Roanoke.
While she said her game improved while working at the academy, Durmaz said she’s glad to be back playing for the Titans this season.
“It definitely made me a better player especially with the mental part. I used to blow up on the court, but now I’m a lot calmer,” Durmaz said.
“I do enjoy it here though. It is more social and more relaxing,” added Durmaz. “There’s a lot of good people here.”
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