October 14, 2012
LIMA — Bath’s Emily Ruhe went a step beyond her season tennis goals on Saturday.
And now, she’s headed to the state tournament.
Ruhe will be the area’s lone representative at the Division II state girls tennis tournament, scheduled for Friday and Saturday at The Ohio State University Outdoor Varsity Tennis Courts and Hilliard Davidson High School.
Ruhe defeated Lexington’s Courtney Ahmed 6-4, 2-6, 6-2 in the district semifinal to assure herself a top three finish and a trip to Columbus. In the district final, Ruhe fell to Oak Harbor’s Ashley LaFountain 6-0, 6-3 at the University of Northwestern Ohio tennis courts.
“At the beginning of the seaso,n it was my goal to make it to today,” the Bath senior said. “Actually getting second place and making it to Columbus is a bonus.”
On Thursday, at Bowling Green State University, Ruhe knocked off Mansfield St. Peter’s Ann Carracher and Huron’s Brittany Mayer to make it to Saturday’s semifinal.
Ruhe played well in her semifinal matchup, according to second year Bath coach Sandy Dackin.
“She’s playing strong, well and her game,” Dackin said. “She’s hitting the ball a little bit harder. I’m so excited for her. She works really hard. She’s here and needs to enjoy it. I am so proud.”
In the district final, LaFountain hit her shots while Ruhe struggled to find her rhythm. The left-handed senior from Oak Harbor is making a return trip to the state tournament.
“In this second match I didn’t play well,” Ruhe said. “The second match is to get a better seed. It’s more fun and relaxed.”
LaFountain breezed through the first set barely dropping a point. In the second set each player held serve in the first five games and LaFountain led 3-2. Each player was able to break the other’s serve to make the score 4-3. Ruhe served to even the set, but LaFountain broke her again and took a 5-3 lead. LaFountain served the final set and took the match.
Although she does not know who she’ll face on Friday, Dackin feels that Ruhe is ready.
“She’s athletic and strong,” Dackin said. “She’s smart and she knows the game.”