published Saturday, May 25th, 2013

Baylor's Samantha Caswell shares joy of new title

Baylor's McCall Morgan, right, shouts and claps the hand of teammate Samantha Caswell after the duo won their doubles tennis match against GPS.
Baylor's McCall Morgan, right, shouts and claps the hand of teammate Samantha Caswell after the duo won their doubles tennis match against GPS.
Photo by Doug Strickland.
May 20-24, 2013 Murfeesboro, TN

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. — Baylor's Samantha Caswell celebrated her second straight Division II-AA state tennis singles championship the best way she knew how.

Instead of posing for the traditional solo picture of the individual champion, she grabbed sister Harper and teammates McCall Morgan and Maggie Crumbliss and had a "team" picture made.

Caswell overcame a nagging ankle injury to defeat Harpeth Hall's Hannah Maclellan 6-4, 6-2 at Old Fort State Park and repeat as singles champion. The two had never played each other before, and Maclellan's style took some getting used to.

"She doesn't give up on points," Caswell said. "It's good I got the chance to play her, though. That way I'll know what's coming next season."

Caswell isn't set on whether she will play singles or doubles next season. In fact, she doesn't really care, because to her the team title Baylor has won the past three seasons is far more important.

"I usually just let the coaches tell me what I'm going to play," she said. "Individuals is a lot like a regular tennis tournament, but I'd much rather play in a team environment.

"Nothing compares to a team championship."

Contact Gene Henley at ghenley@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6311. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/genehenleytfp.

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