Notre Dame duo pleased despite falling in state tennis semifinal

Notre Dame's Teagan McNamara, left, and Alicia Nahhas finished fourth in Division I doubles.
Notre Dame's Teagan McNamara, left, and Alicia Nahhas finished fourth in Division I doubles.

PLAIN CITY, Ohio — The ending didn’t go as well as they hoped, but the Notre Dame doubles team of junior Teagan McNamara and sophomore Alicia Nahhas wouldn’t trade what they experienced in becoming one of the state’s top tennis duos.

After winning their first two matches at the Division I state tournament Friday, McNamara and Nahhas lost to Olentangy Orange senior Anna Sanford and freshman Alle Sanford 6-0, 6-0 in a semifinal Saturday at the Elysium Tennis Center.

McNamara and Nahhas then fell to Pickerington Central juniors Isis Thomas and Kyas Thomas 6-2, 3-6, 6-4 in the consolation.

“It was our goal all along to just make it to Saturday,” Nahhas said. “Now that we’re in that position, we’re already one of the top teams in the state.”

The Sanford sisters defeated Cincinnati Sycamore sophomores Alexa Abele and Maggie Skwara 6-0, 6-2 for the championship after winning each of their first three matches by 6-0, 6-0 scores.

“They were just a solid team, very consistent,” McNamara said.

“They had very good serves and were just really solid,” Nahhas said.

During the regular season, McNamara played mostly at first singles while Nahhas was at second singles. The duo lost in the second round at state last year.

Coach Kim Pacella was impressed with the seasons McNamara and Nahhas put together. They won sectional and district championships before surviving a three-set match to open the state tournament.

“[The Sanford sisters] were just a little better, but we were happy to be here,” Pacella said.

Notre Dame will play North Canton Hoover in a semifinal of the state team tournament today while Mason will meet Upper Arlington in the other semifinal.

“Both [McNamara and Nahhas] have been very good singles players,” Pacella said. “Teagan was the best player in the TRAC and they both only had two losses all year. A lot of it is the experience.”