Lake Forest’s Lipp, Zordani clinch state championship with doubles title
Lake Forest's Maddie Lipp closes in on a drop shot against Glenbrook North during her quarterfinal doubles match at the IHSA Girls Tennis Championships on Saturday, October 20, 2012 in Buffalo Grove. | Joel Lerner~Sun-Times Media
Updated: October 20, 2012 9:52PM
BUFFALO GROVE — Maddie Lipp elected to play through a trio of lingering injuries for the final three weeks of her senior season both in the pursuit of a state doubles title and to try to lead Lake Forest to a state championship.
Lipp accomplished both goals Saturday.
The Northwestern recruit and freshman Christina Zordani rolled through their three matches Saturday — including a commanding victory over Hinsdale Central’s two-time state champion doubles team in the state semifinals — to win the state doubles title.
Lipp and Zordani’s 6-3, 6-1 victory over Hinsdale Central’s Marika Cusick and Caroline Lorenzini was vital to Lake Forest capturing its second team title in three years. The Scouts finished with 39 points, three ahead of the second-place Red Devils. New Trier finished third with 28 points.
“At least for me, playing for our school and representing our families and friends as a Scout, it doesn’t get much better than that,” said Lipp, who has battled shoulder, elbow and wrist injuries since August. “It feels good.”
Lipp and Zordani earned two points with their win over Cusick and Lorenzini, and two points when they beat St. Teresa’s Tracy and Amy Kuhle 6-2, 6-3 for the state title. Cusick and Lorenzini collected a point by defeating Stevenson’s Alexxis Kiven and Kaylin Dong for third place, but the three-point swing in doubles was a major reason why the Scouts won the team title.
Lipp and Zordani were able to win the state doubles title partly because of a strong bond quickly formed during their three weeks as doubles partners. That bond began taking form against weaker competition at the Stevenson Sectional and on the first day of the state tournament. It was impenetrable against the state’s top doubles teams Saturday.
“Sectionals, it obviously wasn’t the same type of competition that you’ve got here,” Lipp said. “But I think sectionals helped us get ready for this tournament, and then the first few rounds we were just getting used to each other. I really felt like in the semis we came together as a team.”
Although Lipp and Zordani are in very different places in their respective careers — Zordani has three more years at Lake Forest, while Lipp played her final high school tennis matches Saturday — they were both able to do something that their older sisters came up just short of accomplishing.
Lipp’s sister Nicole, who plays soccer at Duke, was a part of second-place doubles teams in 2006 and 2008. Elizabeth Zordani, who finished fifth in singles Saturday, finished second to Cusick and Lorenzini in 2010.
“That was so exciting,” said junior Elizabeth Zordani, on learning that her sister won a state doubles title. “When I was a freshman, I got second, but she won. That’s obviously huge. I’m really happy for her.”
Pick up your local Pioneer Press newspaper on Thursday to read more about the girls state tennis tournament.