The Newton County tennis team clinched a spot in the south state championship on Saturday with a 5-2 win over North Pike.

The Cougars, who improved to 9-9 on the season, will travel on Columbia Friday at 6 p.m. with a spot in the state championship on the line.

Newton County's Brandon St. Clair (6-0, 6-0) and Shannon St. Clair (6-1, 6-1) picked up wins in the boys and girls singles matches, respectively.

Cassie Munn and Claire Tadlock teamed up to take the No. 1 girls doubles match with a 6-0, 6-1 score.

Emily Lucy and Lauren Lurk won their doubles match in straight sets, 6-0, 6-0.

The mixed doubles duo of Aaron Scoggin and Kelsey Tadlock took a 6-1, 6-3 win.

The boys doubles teams — both of which came up short — went to three sets. Blake Cochran and Bryden Reed were defeated 7-6(4), 4-6, 12-10; while Richie Ferguson and David Brand fell 6-4, 5-7, 10-7.

Carrie Rushing (girls singles) and the doubles teams of Cochran-Reed, Munn-Tadlock, Lucy-Lurk and Tadlock-Scoggin will all take part in the individual tournaments at the State Championships May 4-5 in Ridgeland.

— Chris Brennaman

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