LITCHFIELD >> When Litchfield’s Sabrina Cofer’s return went out of the back of the court, history was made as MacKenzie Blair became the first Thomaston tennis player ever, male or female, to win a tournament title, taking home the singles Berkshire League title, 8-6.
“It hasn’t really kicked in yet,” Blair, a senior, said.
As she exited the court she was mobbed by her teammates who hugged her as they shared tears.
“I haven’t even hugged her yet,” said Thomaston head coach Jeff Dauphinais who admitted to not knowing how he felt. “I never had this happen before.”
Blair was one of four singles players who advanced on Saturday, she was joined by Nonnewaug’s Reilly Ratcliffe, who she beat in the semifinals 8-5 and Shepaug’s Caroline Kelly who lost to Cofer in the semifinals, 8-0.
Cofer was not an unknown opponent, other than playing against each other for four years; they played on Monday with Blair winning that match as well, 8-2.
“Monday was huge, she played so well on Saturday, beating her (Cofer) gave her confidence,” Dauphinais said.
Throughout the season Blair, who was the Golden Bears number one singles player, played against each team’s top player, and lost to Cofer and Ratcliffe.
“As the season went on, I came into matches less stressed and more confident,” Blair said.
Being less stressed helped Blair in the final match as Blair has a commanding 7-4 lead before Cofer began to come back, pulling to within 7-6.
Cofer then had the lead 40-30 in the game, with a chance to tie the match at 7-7, Blair then forced a tiebreaker, where they went back and forth with chances to take the point.
“I got a little nervous, but I had to keep playing and stay positive,” she said.
Blair was able to stay relaxed and positive, finally winning the tiebreaker and the match.
Litchfield’s double duo of Elena Kennedy and Margaret Hill took home the doubles Berkshire League title with an 8-3 win over Thomaston’s Rhianon Mecca and Jessenia Gonzalez.
Kennedy and Hill took down Thomaston second doubles pair of Allison Snow and Vanessa Thornberg to reach the finals.