Playing in the last match has its benefits, according to Loyola junior Caroline Paden.

With everybody else finished at Saturday’s GCAC tournament in Wilmette, all eyes were on the title match at No. 3 doubles.

Paden said the support from her teammates, coaches and parents helped lift her and junior Alex Ethridge to a 6-2, 4-6, 10-7 (tiebreaker) win and the conference championship. It was the first league title for both Ethridge and Paden.

“Having that cheering section was awesome,” Paden said. “When we started, we had the football players watching us. It was great.”

In addition to Ethridge and Paden, the No. 1 doubles team of senior Maggie Hines and junior Lizzie Witkowski also finished first Saturday after a 6-2, 6-2 win in the title match.

“We were really solid [Saturday],” Witkowski said.

Added Hines: “We have gotten better as the season has gone on. We are playing our best right now.”

But two wins at doubles wasn’t enough for the Ramblers to take the team title. They finished with 18 points to place second behind St. Ignatius (26). Fenwick (12) was third at the six-team event.

The Ramblers compete at the Class AA Niles West Sectional next weekend.

Pictured above (left to right): Caroline Paden, Alex Ethridge, Maggie Hines, Lizzie Witkowski, head coach Tom Gordon