Senior Elizabeth Maxsons four-year tennis career at Bishop Dwenger has included playing at No. 1 doubles with her sister, Danielle, for a couple of years and then for two years with junior Audrey Rang, whom she considers a sister.
We are basically sisters, Maxson said of Rang. We train together. We stretch together. We play together, and we eat together. We just know the right thing to say to each other. Were like each others other half.
Maxsons career has also included four trips (once as a team) to the state finals, the last two being in the doubles competition with Rang where the two finished as state runner-up last year. Maxson went to the state doubles competition as a freshman with Danielle.
Maxson and Rang fell to Highlands Abigail and Vanessa Madrigal in the 2012 state title match 6-1, 6-2. Maxson and Rang are looking to capture the title this season.
I am so excited and thrilled to be returning to state for the fourth time, the second year with the same partner, Maxson said. Its an experience that not many people get to have, especially every year of high school. We gave it all we had and that is more than I could have asked for in a partner.
The two will play South Bend St. Josephs Emily Lyon and Madddie Minaudo (19-4) in the first round at 10 a.m. today at Park Tudor in Indianapolis. The quarterfinals will be at 2 p.m. today, with the semifinals and finals Saturday.
When we won the individual regionals (Monday), all I could do was smile, Rang said. Im so happy to be returning to state with Elizabeth. We arent looking too far ahead until the day comes. Right now we are just happy to be returning and giving it all we have. In our minds we didnt come up short last year, we made it farther than we could have dreamed of.
A first-round win would put the Saints duo into the quarterfinals against Floyd Centrals Whitney Batliner and Dana Frank (28-2).
Audrey and Elizabeth have been an amazing doubles team, Dwenger coach Jeremy Patterson said. They are both extremely driven and motivated girls who want to succeed. They have chemistry between them and have developed constant trust in each other that not many doubles teams are able to develop fully.
Along with that sisterly like bond, Maxson and Rang also share something else – back and hip issues. Patterson called them recurring injuries over the last two years.
We both have had our ups and downs with injuries, but it only fuels us to fight harder, Maxson said. We have learned where to draw the limits when facing back injuries to not over due ourselves.
Rang was the No. 2 singles player as a freshman behind No. 1 singles player and her sister, Ashlyn Rang, when the Saints went to the state team finals.
Rang teamed up with Maxson on the No. 1 doubles team last year in part because of her injuries after Danielle graduated.
We have made a few adjustments to our game and the way we play but not by much, Rang said of the injuries. If anything, we relate more to each other in a friendship way than just a doubles partner.