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Freshman Clinches Rare WPIAL Class 3A Singles Title

In an unexpected turn of events, freshman Meriwether M. achieved a remarkable feat by securing the WPIAL Class 3A singles title. This accomplishment is exceptionally rare for freshmen, with only two instances occurring in the last 20 years.

During the Class 3A singles final on September 19, 2023, Meriwether faced off against the reigning champion, Mia W. of Penn-Trafford. She managed to secure victory in straight sets (7-6(1), 6-1), marking a significant upset.

Meriwether's path to victory was no cakewalk. As the tournament began, she faced and triumphed over formidable opponents, including Mt. Lebanon sophomore Jackie T. (10-7) and Bethel Park freshman Cami F. (10-8). Her journey culminated in a tense semifinal match against Pine-Richland freshman Caroline P., which she won 6-4, 7-6(3), earning her a spot in the championship match.

Meriwether's achievement places her in a select group at Shady Side Academy, making her only the third player in the school's history to secure the singles title in the highest classification. She joins the ranks of Lauren G. '08 and two-time champion Ananya D. '16. Notably, Meriwether and Mia are the first freshmen to win back-to-back titles in the highest classification since 2016 and 2017.

Despite her freshman status, Meriwether's impressive No. 6 state ranking among freshmen attests to her tennis prowess, a result of her experience in high-level tournaments over the years. This experience undoubtedly played a crucial role in her championship victory.

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