LEWISTON -Chantalle Lavertu had a spring in her step and new life in her match Saturday afternoon.

The first set of the Lewiston sophomore’s quarterfinal match in the singles championships Saturday had Lavertu holding her head in her hands while frustration overwhelmed her.

After a rousing rally to survive the second set, Lavertu jumped with glee after the victory and bounced her way to the sidelines to reset the score for the final decisive set.

“It was definitely a whole new game,” said Lavertu. “I’ve played a lot of tennis and the third set is ‘I’m fresh. It’s all new.’ I don’t think about the past sets and you do whatever you normally do.”

Erin Flynn, a junior from John Bapst, gave Lavertu all she could handle, but Lewiston’s top singles player used the new life to advance to Monday’s semifinals. After the 2-6, 7-5 scores in the first two sets, Lavertu finished off the two-and-a-half hour match with a 6-4 win in the final set.

“It was stressful, very very stressful,” said a relieved and exhausted Lavertu.

Lavertu was the only Lewiston player to advance to Monday’s semifinals at Bates College. Julia Bergeron, Mike Sarrazin and Mike Butler all won morning matches, but lost in the afternoon.

After having reached the semifinals last year, Lavertu entered this year’s tournament ranked second overall. She quickly dispatched Erika Blauth of Camden , 6-0, 6-0 but found herself in trouble early against the strong, steady and smart play of Flynn.

“I just didn’t know how to hit against her because she’s so consistent and gets everything back,” said Lavertu. “At first, I was just trying to pound winners, but I’d just mess up my shots. I’d get frustrated with that. I started coming to the net a little bit, and I got points off that.”

Lavertu started to get back on track in the second set but still was in trouble. At one point, Flynn had the 5-4 lead and had Lavertu facing match point.

Lavertu admits panic was setting in. The reality of not reaching the level she did last year and the disappointment of a possible loss consumed her thoughts.

“So many things were going through my head,” she said. “I just tried to hit back and lob it and do whatever I had to do.”

After forcing the third set, Lavertu fell behind 2-0 but quickly rallied again.

Lavertu advances to Monday morning semifinal match with Hallsey Leighton of Cheverus.

Bergeron faced a tough foe in Messalonskee’s Deahna Giguere and fell, 6-3, 6-0

Butler pressed Falmouth’s Sam Hyland and lost the first set 7-5, and continued to battle before losing 6-4 in the second.

Sarrazin also had a tough morning match, surviving 2-6, 6-4, 6-4. When he faced second-seeded Neall Oliver from Deering, he fell, 6-2, 6-2.

“I just wanted to give it my best,” said Sarrazin, a senior. “He’s really good. He’s the No. 2 seed. I knew he was going to hit hard. I was ready for that. I like players that hit hard. I just tried everything I could. He was obviously a better player.”

Sarrazin was so drained by the end of his second match, his voice was nearly gone.

“I knew I had nothing to lose,” he said. “I just had to give it my all.”


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