When sports and Ennis are used in the same sentence it is usually a reference to football.

Most people dont know of the huge success of the Ennis tennis program.

under the direction of Coach Keith Howard the Lions have been perennial champions of its district wars and advancement to the Region II tourament without exception. Normally the Lions are state ranked as well.

All that highlights the fact that Midlothian defeated Ennis last Tuesday to increase the Panther district record to 2-0.

It was the first tennis victory over Ennis that anyone associated with the program can remember, it may even be the first time ever.

The team defeated Arlington Seguin 12-7 in the District 15-4A opener.

The Panthers got off to an early lead against Ennis in doubles matches with a win by Christa Watson and Emma Doskocil at No. 2 girls doubles, followed by a win at No. 2 boys doubles played by Justin Toth and Justin Honeycutt.

Olivia Teague and Jacque Liekis finished off the girls wins at No. 3 doubles. The teams of Tanner Hill/ Chris Laterza at No. 1 and Tucker Putty/Garrett Blake at No. 3 won on the boys side.

In mixed doubles team of John Nigo and Ashley Yeager came back from a one set defecit to defeat the Lions in three sets.

With six wins under their belts, the Panthers moved into singles play needing only fourmatches to win the day.

The team played a phenomenal match. We came out of doubles play at 6-1, which is a real confirmation of all the work weve been doing to improve in that discipline, MHS tennis coach Brady Gibson said.

Im very pleased with the maturity the team demonstrated. We split sets in six matches and won five of those, which shows how mentally tough these kids have become, MHS tennis coach Marcus Canonico added.

After three tough losses at Nos. 1, 2 and 4 girls singles, the team rallied back as Nathan Winsor won at No. 6, Emma Doskocil won at No. 3, Justin Toth won at No. 4 on the guys side.

Tanner Hill then sealed the victory with his win at No. 1.

The Panthers will now trek to Corsicana to take on the state ranked Tiger tennis team.

in a battle of unbeatens in the race for the district title.

See page 3C for additional photos of the historic Panther win over Ennis.