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DeForest's Fuchs sisters, Edgewood's Baluck Deang win state tennis championships

DeForest's Fuchs sisters, Edgewood's Baluck Deang win state tennis championships


When they were asked about wins and losses, Cecile and Samantha Fuchs had to think for a second.

“Thirty-nine and zero,” Samantha said with a laugh, denoting the pair’s final record this season. “Gotta do some math here.”

For half of that win-loss total, anyway. The loss column was easy enough to remember. And it won’t soon be forgotten, especially after the DeForest duo wrapped up the Division 1 doubles title at the WIAA girls state individual tennis tournament Saturday afternoon.

“Our minds weren’t set on winning,” Samantha Fuchs admitted. “We just wanted … to show people that we were good enough to get here.”

From the moment they stepped on the court Friday morning at Nielsen Tennis Stadium, there was no doubting the skill of the Norskies’ top doubles tandem. The Fuchs sisters never dropped a set in five tournament matches and only lost more than three games in a set once in two days of action.

That relatively easy road paid dividends Saturday. While Elena Deslongchamps and Katie Kavanagh of Whitefish Bay toughed out a 4-6, 7-6 (1), 7-5 victory over top-seeded Lauren Sobieski and Maddie Toboyek of Muskego, the Fuchs sisters cruised to a 6-0, 6-3 semifinal victory over Mequon Homestead’s Kate Wade and Sasha Shapsis.

When she and her sister took the court for the final, Cecile Fuchs already knew they had the upper hand.

“Our semifinal match wasn’t really that long, so I think we had an advantage,” she said.

A 6-3, 6-0 victory over Deslongchamps and Kavanagh put the finishing touches on the perfect season and gave DeForest its first state tennis title.

“It feels amazing, because, the last (two) years at state, I haven’t really gotten as far,” Cecile Fuchs said. “So this feels great to finally win. To do it with my sister was really amazing.”

In Division 2, Baluck Deang earned the only kind of state tennis hardware the Madison Edgewood girls program didn’t have: an individual singles championship.

“It feels good knowing that all my hard working (and) hitting after practice paid off,” Deang said.

The top spot on the podium didn’t come easy. After taking the first set in her championship match against top-seeded Sarah Gesner of Racine Prairie, Deang faltered in the second and lost it in a tiebreaker.

“She knew what I was doing, so she (changed) her playing style to fit my playing style, to throw me off,” Deang said of the momentum swing.

The Edgewood junior trailed 2-1 in the decisive third set before reeling off five consecutive games to secure the title 6-3, 6-7 (5), 6-4.

“I felt positive, like, ‘OK, you’ve got to go. You have to get ready and you have to move your feet. There’s people watching you.’” Deang said. “My whole family came out, so that kind of motivated me to push through.”

In the Division 2 doubles draw, the third-seeded Monroe duo of Jensen Christensen and Grace Tostrud fought through a long semifinal match of their own but didn’t have enough left to bring home a title. Still, the Cheesemakers seniors were able to put Saturday — and their season — in perspective.

“It was a really good season overall,” Christensen said. “I’m really proud of how we did today, but not just today. Overall, the season was really good.”

Added Tostrud, “The end goal for every team is to end your season at state, so playing on the last day of the tennis season with one of my best friends is a really cool opportunity.”

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