Déjà vu: Reinhauer, Atkins win regional titles

St. Louis Catholic juniors Kai Reinauer and Kyleigh Atkins swept the Division III, Region II tennis singles titles for a second consecutive year at the Lake Charles Racquet Club on Tuesday.

St. Louis almost swept the team titles. The boys defended their regional title with 19 points, while Catholic-New Iberia was second (7). The girls teams lost to Catholic-New Iberia 14-13.

Reinauer, the defending state singles champion, played for the first time since an injury and beat teammate Dillon Darby in the final 6-2, 6-0.

“I thought this past week was good,” Reinauer said. “It has been difficult to get here the last couple of weeks.

“We have had a lot of players that have been injured, including me. I haven’t played in a couple of weeks so this is my first time playing. We got a good practice in with the team, and I thought we all came out and played really well.”

Atkins lost the first set to Catholic-New Iberia’s Lauren Fremin 6-3 and started the second set down 1-0 before taking the next three points. She won the second set 6-4 with an ace. She trailed in the third set 2-0 but rallied to close out the championship match 6-3.

“I told myself I needed to get my act together and push through so I could win the second set and hopefully win the tiebreaker,” Atkins said. “I am so excited.

“I actually played the same girl (as 2021) and pulled through and won.”

The girls team title came down to the doubles point. Catholic-New Iberia’s Olivia Cestis and Phoebe Neuville took the first set 6-4, but St. Louis sisters Mary Rose and Madelyn Buttross jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the second, winning 6-3. Catholic-New Iberia won the third set 6-2.

Eli Crawford and Ben Reinauer, the defending state champion doubles team, won the regional title in an all-St. Louis final, beating Camden Watkins and Miller McFatter 6-1, 6-4.

Reinauer said the thinks the Saints have a good chance at repeating as Division III state champs in two weeks at the state tournament at Louisiana-Monroe on April 25-26.

“We all had a very successful outing here at regionals,” Reinauer said. “I think with some good practices in the next couple of weeks I think we really have a good chance to go back-to-back.”

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