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Tennis  Girls vs Nixa 017When senior Samantha Minor found out she’d be facing tougher competition because Republic had moved up a class in girls’ tennis, she says her hope of a return trip to the state tournament “nearly vanished.” But her hard work paid off Tuesday, as Minor earned a second consecutive state appearance with a 6-2 6-2 win over Sarah Hess of West Plains in the sectional at Republic.

How will she approach her trip to state this time around?

“My approach this year is going to be to play my game. It isn’t worth it to be intimidated or cautious,” Minor says. “Where I go from here doesn’t matter to me, I’m just happy I’ve gotten to be where I am. It’s an honor to have made it back to state, and I would want nothing less than to give it my very best.”

Republic’s doubles team of Danielle Hopkins and Michaela Moore were knocked out of the individual state bracket Tuesday. Hopkins and Moore lost to Cecelia and Lucy Givens of Branson, the #1 seed, 6-0 6-1.

But Hopkins, Moore and the rest of the Lady Tigers aren’t finished yet. They’ll compete in the team sectionals at Branson Saturday.

For Minor, the individual state tournament will be held at Cooper Tennis Complex a week from Friday.

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