After back-to-back runner-up finishes at the Division II state girls tennis tournament, Columbus Academy junior Sydni Ratliff is now a state champion.

Also leaving Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason on Oct. 19 with a state title was the Dublin Jerome doubles team of juniors Lalasa Nagireddy and Arya Dudipala, who beat their teammates, seniors Reagan Resor and Katherine Wang, 6-4, 7-5 in the Division I championship match.

Ratliff defeated West Geauga’s Rylie Hanford 6-2, 6-2 in a semifinal and Gates Mills Gilmour Academy’s Carly Cohen 6-4, 7-5 in the final.

“I’m really excited that I’m a state champion,” Ratliff said. “I feel like I’ve grown as a player. My coming to the net was a huge part of my success, along with my fitness.”

Nagireddy and Dudipala beat Olentangy Orange seniors Kortney Reed and Erin Storrer 6-3, 7-5 and Resor and Wang defeated Mason’s Annie Kruse and Raina Chada 5-7, 6-3, 7-5 in semifinals to set up their meeting for the title.

“We gave it our all,” Nagireddy said. “It’s (unfortunate to play teammates for the title), but at the same time, I’m glad that we both made it this far.”

Storrer and Reed lost to Kruse and Chada 6-4, 6-3 in the consolation match to place fourth.

In Division I singles, Pickerington North senior Cassie Alcala lost to Springboro’s Abby Nugent, the eventual champion, 6-4, 5-7, 6-0 in a semifinal but beat North Canton Hoover’s Laurel Utterback 1-6, 6-4, 6-4 in the consolation match to place third.

In Division II doubles, sophomore Alexis Burkhalter and freshman Katie Zerbi of Wellington lost to eventual champions Morgan Coburn and Hayley Hirsch of Cincinnati Indian Hill 6-1, 6-0 in a semifinal and fell to Dayton Oakwood’s Sophie Russell and Natalie Connelly 6-4, 6-7, 6-4 in the consolation match to finish fourth.

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