Hancock wins 4th title, helps Panthers take 3A team tennis championship

SALT LAKE CITY — In the mid-1980s, Brighton’s Ruth Ann Stevens became the only girl ever in the state of Utah to win four straight 1st Singles titles in varsity tennis. Now, some three decades later, Stevens has some company.

1st singles State champion Lacey Hancock, for Pine View, Salt Lake City, Utah, Oct. 11, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Harold Nelson
1st singles State champion Lacey Hancock, for Pine View, Salt Lake City, Utah, Oct. 11, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Harold Nelson

Lacey Hancock, the Pine View tennis princess with a sweet smile and a killer serve, swept through the 2014 3A Tennis Tournament virtually unchallenged for her fourth straight 1st Singles title in a row. In doing so, Hancock also helped her team get over the hump and win the state team title as well.

Hancock won dropped just five games in eight sets, winning all four state matches in straight sets. She beat Ashley Hansen of Union 6-0, 6-0 in the first round, then dropped Sydney Squires of Stansbury 6-0, 6-0 in the quarterfinals. Freshman semifinalist Taylor Matz of Park City actually won two games off of Hancock in a 6-0, 6-2 loss to the PV senior. Hancock then took down Region 9 foe Madz Eames of Desert Hills 6-2, 6-1 in the championship match, making it a perfect 10-0 on the season for Hancock.

She was not alone in her success for the Panthers, who won the state title with 19 team points, out-distancing Park City (14), Dixie (13) and Grantsville (13). Pine View senior Hannah Erekson added a 2nd Singles state title to her Region 9 title with a 1-6, 6-1, 6-3 victory in the finals over Grantsville’s Bailie Sandberg. Erekson had won her three previous matches in straight set before struggling a bit with Region 11’s top player, who is just a sophomore. Erekson also finishes the year 10-0.

Her younger sister, Hattie Erekson, won 3rd Singles at state, giving the Panthers a clean sweep in the singles competition. Hattie, who also finished 10-0, beat Jessica Santos of Park City in the finals, 6-2, 3-6, 6-4. Hattie, just a sophomore, had raced through state without dropping a set before the championship match.

The 1st Doubles title went to Dixie’s team of Kenedi Cooper and Savannah Topham. Cooper and Topham topped Madi Linares and Whitney Castagno of Grantsville 6-0, 4-6, 6-2 in the championship match.

The 2nd Doubles title was won by Kelli Stovall and Rachael Barney, also of Dixie. The duo beat Marina Mayo and Sierra Wakefield of Park City 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 in the finals.

Pine View’s team title is its first since 2007. The Panthers, who had won five of the six previous team titles, were unseated in 2008 by Desert Hills, which went on to win three in a row. But PV is back on top, thanks to Hancock and the Erekson sisters. This PV’s sixth title overall in girls tennis.

The 3A State Tournament was held at Liberty Park in Salt Lake City.

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