Warriors net four flight titles on their way to winning CSL North
Deerfield's Mindy Borovsky, seen here in earlier action this fall, took first at No. 2 singles in last week's CSL North tournament. | Joel Lerner~Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 16, 2011 10:33AM
Mindy Borovsky, a singles player, was in a doubly mood last week.
The Deerfield High School junior consumed an order of double-chocolate ice cream after helping the Warriors win the CSL North tennis meet at Glenbrook North Oct. 5.
Earlier in the day, Borovsky needed to inhale something healthier.
“I ate an energy bar,” she said.
Borovsky, battling through a sore left Achilles’ tendon for most of the fall, had just split sets with Glenbrook North’s Elizabeth Sak in the No. 2 singles final when she reached for quick nourishment.
“I was feeling kind of dizzy, and my legs … they tightened up,” said Borovsky, a state qualifier in singles last fall. “The energy bar helped, and so did the encouraging words I heard from my coaches during court change-overs.
“They pumped me up.”
Borovsky, seeded third, gave her team a lift with a 6-1, 5-7, 6-1 victory, after dismissing her first two opponents by 6-0, 6-0 decisions in the one-day tourney.
“Mindy willed herself to stay on the court (in the final),” said Warriors second-year coach Rich Koukol. “Midway through that second set, I’m thinking, ‘That’s it; she’d had enough.’ But she found that drive to pull it out. It took a lot of courage.”
After the meet Koukol and his Warriors took out a big imaginary pen and crossed off the first goal on their 2011 list of goals: Repeat as CSL North champs.
Deerfield amassed 47 points, ahead of runner-up Glenbrook North (42) and Highland Park (40.5).
Deerfield’s result last week didn’t surprise a soul.
Five of Deerfield’s six players on its fifth-place state team in 2010, after all, returned this fall.
Warriors junior Alexis Casati’s 2011 overall record, at No. 1 singles, matched the weather conditions at the league meet.
“Perfect,” Koukol said. “A beautiful day. Perfect tennis weather.”
Casati defeated Highland Park’s Jacqueline Baum 6-3, 6-1 in her final. Former German tennis great Steffi Graf, back when she owned the WTA’s No. 1 world ranking in the late 1980s and 1990s, was known as “Fraulein Forehand.”
A proposed nickname for Casati: “Miss Can’t Miss.”
Particularly on the forehand side.
“Alexis’ forehand … it’s lethal,” Koukol gushed. “She’s using it to hit winners like you wouldn’t believe, anywhere on the court.”
Deerfield junior Emily Kolpas shook off a wrist injury to top the No. 3 singles field, downing HP’s Alyssa Retsky 6-2, 6-1 in her final.
“She cruised,” Koukol said. “She also kept her focus and showed a lot of heart.”
Koukal loved what he received from his No. 3 tandem of junior Katie Frankel and sophomore Jessie Arenson: a flight title. They defeated HP’s Ali Jacobs/Stephanie Bailen 6-3, 7-5 for the team’s fourth flight title at the seven-flight meet.
“Jessie is really steady, really consistent, and Katie likes to hammer shots,” Koukol said. “And they both love to be at the net. When they’re up there, they’re aggressive.
“Points, in their matches,” he added, “don’t last very long.”
Deerfield seniors Lynsey Howse/Megan Buranosky finished second at No. 4 doubles, after avenging a regular-season loss to a Glenbrook North pair in a semifinal.
“Huge win … a critical win,” said Koukol. “Had they not won that semi, it would have really tightened things up between GBN and us.”
The Warriors’ top two doubles teams – Jenna Borzak/Jorie Fox (No. 1) and Raquel Boton/Erica Joseph (No. 2) – each placed third.
Quote-worthy: Borovsky, on the league meet lasting only one day; it’s normally a two-day event: “We liked that … liked that we had to duke it out in one day. We didn’t want to play after school one day and then finish it the next day.”
On the schedule: Deerfield vies for state berths at this weekend’s Stevenson Sectional, beginning Friday afternoon. The two sites: VHAC and Vernon Hills High School’s courts.
Other schools in the field: Hersey, St. Viator, Buffalo Grove, Lake Zurich, Palatine, Vernon Hills and Wauconda.
Flashback: Deerfield captured last fall’s Stevenson Sectional championship, as all four Warriors entrants advanced to the state meet.
Boton/Meghan Frankel (DHS, ’11) defeated Borzak/Fox 6-4, 6-4 in the doubles match for third place, while Casati downed Buffalo Grove’s Nell Boyd 6-1, 6-1 in the singles final; Borovsky finished fourth after a semifinal loss to Boyd.
Right at home: Deerfield won the CSL North JV Meet on its home courts Oct. 5, receiving championship efforts from four entrants: sophomore Natalie Brown (No. 1 singles), junior Laura Holzman/sophomore Marisa Kaplan (No. 1 doubles), juniors Dana Levy/Cara Silverman (No. 2 doubles) and juniors Sari Schwartz/Lizzie Burgess (No. 3 doubles).
Each of Deerfield’s three other entrants finished runner-up: sophomore Kaitlyn Grace (No. 2 singles), sophomore Lauren Spungen (No. 3 singles) and sophomore Amanda Charman/freshman Isabelle Siegel (No. 4 doubles).
Second-year coach Ashley Langhorst’s Warriors tallied 51 points, ahead of runner-up Highland Park (45.5).
“They worked really hard, all season,” said Langhorst, whose first DHS squad also won the league title. “They came out to win.
“The league meet, especially at the JV level, is a big deal,” the Fremd graduate added.