WHITEVILLE — Expectations of an all-out tussle between Three Rivers Conference tennis title contenders never materialized Thursday.
West Bladen commanded an 8-1 decision at Whiteville with three routs in singles, then breezed through doubles dropping just three games total. Head coach Billy Bryant’s Lady Knights climbed to 8-0 on the season, all in the league, and remain the county’s only prep team in any sport to win every outing this fall.
West Bladen completes the first trip through the season’s round-robin home-and-home schedule with a visit to West Columbus on Tuesday, then hosts St. Pauls on Thursday before a trip to second-place South Columbus on Sept. 11.
South Columbus, a 5-4 loser at West Bladen in the season’s opening week, handed Whiteville its only other league loss, 6-3, on Aug. 20.
West Bladen captured two of the three tightest singles matches. Senior Savannah Lee was a 6-3, 6-3 winner in the No. 1 slot, and senior Haleigh Dunn was a 6-1, 6-7 (3-7), (10-4) winner in the No. 6 spot.
Junior Autumn Brisson was denied 7-6 (7-4), 6-4 at No. 2.
Elsewhere, the Lady Knights rolled. Junior Alyssa Bell scored a crushing 6-0, 6-0 win at No. 3, senior Mireya Sandoval breezed 6-1, 6-1 at No. 4 and junior Alyssa Smith cruised 6-0, 6-2 at No. 5. Bell, Sandoval and Smith are all undefeated in eight singles matches; Bell lost just one game across six sets in three singles victories during the week.
In doubles, Brisson-Bell won 8-1 at No. 1, Lee-Dunn prevailed 8-2 at No. 2 and Sandoval-Smith won 8-0 at No. 3. Sandoval-Smith (8-0) and Brisson Bell (7-0) are each unbeaten. Sandoval-Smith have not lost more than two games in a match and have posted four 8-0 wins; Brisson-Bell have three 8-0 wins.