Marie Discini finds success at USTA Midwest Closed

PARKERSBURG — A lot of talented participants went winless in the 128-player field of the 2017 USTA Midwest Level 1 Closed Championships — Girls 16 this past week in Indianapolis, Ind.

Mid-Ohio Valley local Marie Discini was not among them.

Victory did not come immediately, however, as Discni fell to the 23rd-seeded Carolyn Ahn 6-4, 6-1 in the opening round Saturday to drop into the consolation bracket.

The Parkersburg Catholic sophomore picked up a consolation first-round win over Columbus, Ohio’s Paige Kompa during the July 24-29 event. Kompa presented a challenging matchup out of the gate as she laid claim to the 2015 Ohio Division I high school state championship.

The 15-year-old Discini began the match against her 16-year-old opponent down 2-0 and one point away from falling behind 3-0 before her comeback began.

“The wind kind of worked in my favor,” shared the Crusader who won the last six games to take the first set 6-2. “She was missing a lot of balls and was inconsistent with the wind and I got the advantage and was more consistent then her. She got mad easily early and in the beginning tried to intimidate me by shouting ‘Let’s go,’ a lot. I stayed quiet the whole time, kept a positive attitude and picked up that set.”

Kompa settled down a little bit in the second set and started working the net more. The attack worked in her favor. Her drop shot made a bigger appearance and her rallies and overheads stayed in more. Discini was down 5-3 (love-40) with Kompa in possession of triple-match point. However, the Crusader managed to get back to duece and win the game before her opponent took the next two out of three games for a set victory.

Coach and father Jason Discini had a few words of advice for his daughter during a break between sets. “I told her to maybe slice a little more and prolong the points longer,” he said.

Things started out in Kompa’s favor in the third and final set after she set an ace whizzing by Discini, but the MOV local fought back to take the next four points and the match. Prolonging the points even longer made her opponent visibly frustrated during the games.

“She almost got disqualified after being late returning to the court for the beginning of the third set,” said Discini. “She started missing everything too.”

Five colleges were in attendance at her assigned sight and several watched her matches, but no one can make contact with Discini until Sept. 1 of her junior year.

Back flareups hurt Discini in her quest to pick up a second win in the tournament during her consolation second-round matchup against the 17th-seeded girl in the tournament, Gina Kondos.

The exhaustion and excitement of such a long match the previous day (her battle against Kompa lasted two-plus hours) also played a factor according to her father.

“When you have a big win like Marie did, it sometimes takes a lot out of you,” said Jason. “And I think she was spent the next day after beating Paige. Going three sets with a giant win is gruelling. Every round is like a final at states (high school tournament).”

Kondos took the match 6-0, 6-1.

Discini and doubles partner Mikinzie Hindenlang put up a good fight but were one-and-done after a 9-7 defeat in the opening round.

Discini’s win (her second in three years at the event) set her up for automatic qualification in any USTA Midwest event she may wish to enter the remainder of the summer. While it is a nice perk to have, she hasn’t picked up her racket since returning from Indy and plans to take most of July off.

Two trips to Grand Rapids, Mich., have been talked about as well as a trip to Purdue University later in the summer.