Back-to-back losses on the second day of the Niles North Sectional tournament couldn’t prevent Evanston’s Jessica Ampel and Abbey Moore from keeping their season alive Saturday.

The ETHS seniors earned a return trip to the Illinois High School Association state tennis tournament with a fourth place doubles finish.

Ampel and Moore, seeded No. 4 in the tourney field, opened with straight set victories Friday against teams from North Shore Country Day and Loyola Academy to clinch another state berth. On Saturday, they dropped a 6-2, 7-5 semifinal decision to New Trier’s Michelle Capone and Catherine Mackinnon, then settled for fourth place with a 6-2, 7-6 (4) loss to New Trier’s other entry, Tess Lubine and Michelle Buyer.

The pair will open state tournament play Thursday at a site still to be determined.

Both of Evanston’s singles entries, Margot Connor and Katherine Mann, were eliminated with first-round sectional losses. Connor was ousted with a 6-0, 6-0 loss to Anna Ross of Loyola and Mann bowed out with a tough 6-4, 7-6 (6) defeat at the hands of Emma Wang of Northside College Prep.

Evanston placed 7th in the team standings with 6 points. New Trier won the sectional team crown with 28.

Source: ETHS Sports Information

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