When Autria Compton was a tennis standout here at Kilgore High School, she had an uncanny knack for winning.
That knack has continued in her collegiate career.
After playing in the very respected Tyler Junior College tennis program for a couple of years, Compton – the daughter of Mark and Vera Compton, of Kilgore – had offers to continue her education and playing career at the four-year level. She accepted the offer from Arizona Christian University, located in Phoenix.
That decision had already paid off in the classroom and now it’s paying off on the court.
Compton, now a junior, partnered with Mikayla Morgan earlier this week as a part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) West regional, in La Miranda, Calif. When Compton and Morgan reached the finals, they found teammates Tia Okano and Elizabeth Kelley their opponents. Compton and Morgan dispatched of their teammates, 6-4, 6-2, to claim the women’s doubles championship.
In doing so, they’ve qualified for the ITA Nationals on Oct. 13-16, and they won’t have to go far: it’s to be played in Surprise, Ariz., at the Surprise Tennis and Racquet Center. It’s only 23 miles from Phoenix to Surprise.
Compton, 20, is a 2014 KHS graduate. She and teammate Sabrina Barnfield reached the UIL state tournament at Texas A&M University her senior season, finishing third.