Weekly Feature

2013-05-22 / Sports

Sacred Heart’s Conway repeats as All-Catholic tennis champ

by PATRICK J. NAGY Reporter

Carlee Conway continues to be unstoppable in Monsignor Martin Association girls tennis.

The Sacred Heart junior defeated Nardin’s Madison Bradley, 6-1, 6-0, to win her third consecutive All-Catholic title Sunday at the Ellicott Complex Courts at the University at Buffalo North Campus.

It was the only time in four matches at the tournament that Conway lost a game as she finished 48-1.

“I have been working my whole life on my tennis game,” Conway said. “It was nice to see it all come together at the tournament.”

Conway has dominated the MMA scene ever since she went to Sacred Heart as a freshman.

In three years with the Sharks, the 5-foot-5 right-handed player has never lost a set and recorded a 43-0 record. This season, she won 156 out of a possible 165 games, a 95 winning percentage.

Conway has taken tennis lessons for the past seven years and credits the improvement in her game over the past three or four years to her work with Gow School Athletic Director Mark Szafnicki and former University at Buffalo women’s tennis player Andrea Novaceanu.

“They have both improved my game which is why I have been so successful in the league,” Conway said.

Conway’s matches last about 20 minutes. Sharks coach Nancy Wingerter said after each match, opposing players look like they “don’t know what has happened.”

Wingerter said Conway is a dominant player because she has a serve that can reach up to 90 mph.

Conway is also an accomplished player in United States Tennis Association matches, playing in tournaments once or twice a month in Rochester, Syracuse or Albany against players from the eastern section of the country. She recently won the Level 1B Eastern May Challenger in Liverpool.

Sacred Heart’s other representative in singles at All-Catholics was Victoria Rucinski, who lost to Conway in straight sets in the second round.

Sacred Heart was also represented in doubles at All-Catholics by Katherine Dunning and Casey Hawk and Bridget White and Grace Gallivan.

Dunning and Hawk lost to Mount Mercy, 6-3, 4-6, 5-7 in the semifinals and White and Gallivan beat Mount Mercy and lost to Buffalo Seminary in the second round.

The Sharks finished 7-3 during the regular season.

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