Some people believe in love at first sight.
That kind of instant attraction might work in other ways, too.
Even though they had never played as much as a set of competitive badminton as partners, Mountain Pointe seniors Sienna Martinez and Holly Phillips thought they might make a pretty good doubles team.
They were right.
They won the Dobson Invitational a little more than a month into the season, took home the Chaparral Invitational championship two weeks later and capped their senior year with a state 5A-I individual doubles title Saturday afternoon at Phoenix North Canyon High School.
Mountain Pointe’s Kathryn Cantrill and Melissa LeBlanc won the same championship last year, but they had played together half of the previous season.
Martinez was the only player returning from the Pride lineup this season and Phillips had played on the junior varsity squad.
But they knew each other well off the court from playing softball since middle school and figured that kind of familiarity would serve them in badminton.
A bit of an odd couple on the court the duo used Phillips’ quickness and Martinez’s powerful smashes to roll through the five rounds of the championship without a loss.
Their only anxious moments were when they lost the opening set of the semifinal and had to go three sets again in the championship match.
Martinez and Holly beat Scottsdale Chaparral’s Stacey McGuire and Ashleigh Foltz in the semi, 11-15, 15-12, 15-10, then faced them again in the championship match after McGuire and Foltz came back through the consolation bracket.
In the rematch Martinez and Phillips won the opening set, 15-1, lost the second, 13-15, and clinched the title with a 15-6 score.
Martinez and Phillips also had to beat Phoenix Xavier’s Danielle Dozer and Cate Welch, 15-6, 17-14, in the final to get a second shot at McGuire and Foltz.
Scottsdale Desert Mountain’s Emily Harris easily won her second consecutive singles championship with an 11-1, 11-0 win over Goodyear Millennium’s Carolyn Houser.