After a weather delay moved the beginning of the state tournament to Sept. 25, difficult competition led the Powell Panther boys’ tennis team to finish seventh, while the girls finished 12th in …
After a weather delay moved the beginning of the state tournament to Sept. 25, difficult competition led the Powell Panther boys’ tennis team to finish seventh, while the girls finished 12th in Gillette.
After Monday at the state tournament the Panthers were in a prime position with three semifinalists at No. 1 singles, No. 2 singles and No. 1 doubles.
“The kids knew that they were going to have to work for it,” coach Joe Asay said.
On top of the three semifinalists the Panthers also had No. 2 doubles and No. 3 doubles battling back in the consolation bracket on Tuesday.
The No. 2 doubles pairing of Seeger Wormald and Ryan Barrus finished 2-2 on the weekend, bowing out in the consolation quarterfinals on Tuesday.
No. 3 doubles had Isaac Stensing and Tevon Schultz finishing with a 2-2 record as well after receiving an opening round bye, advancing all the way to the consolation semifinals before being knocked out in a match that featured every set going to tiebreak.
Nathan Preator finished 2-2 at No. 2 singles, advancing all the way to the semifinals and even forcing a decisive third set in the matchup before falling down to the consolation semifinals and also dropping a match there to end his season.
The highest placing position of the weekend for the Panthers came from Keegan Hicswa and Taeson Schultz who made it all the way to the semifinals, but lost that matchup before battling back to the third place game.
That ultimately resulted in a loss, dropping the pair to fourth place and just outside All-State honors.
“You hope there are more kids playing on that last day but they certainly left it all out there,” Asay said.
Cade Queen was the lone Panther receiving All-State honors for the second time, and he also finished 2-2 on the weekend but received the recognition after placing in the top six at No. 1 singles.
“Cade played great tennis. He knew that he did, he just came out against kids that did not have the pressure on them and stepped up to play great tennis,” Asay said.
Overall the team race for the boys came down to a point, as south opponents Laramie and Cheyenne Central battled to the end with Laramie coming out on top with 43 points.
Powell ended with 17 points.
GIRLS CONTINUE GROWING
This season featured a lot of new faces along with a couple familiar faces in new positions for the Panther girls, and they continued to grow as the season progressed and finished in Gillette.
“They showed a tremendous amount of improvement,” Asay said.
Unfortunately for a set of Panthers, they were unable to make it to the second day of competition as the No. 1 doubles pair of Lucy and Naomi Whipple alongside No. 2 doubles Meaghan McKeen and Sophie Czirr finished 0-2 on the first day.
No. 1 singles Lachelle Lee and No. 2 singles Maya Landwehr each advanced past the first round of consolation but were ultimately eliminated in the first match of day two.
Advancing the furthest for the Panthers was a duo that was moved up into the No. 3 doubles slot late in the year, with Annaliese Peterson and Kyra Morrow pulling a surprise and winning their opening match.
After a quarterfinal loss the duo earned another win before being knocked out in the consolation quarterfinals to finish in the top eight at the state tournament.
“This is a lifetime sport,” Asay said. “It was really exciting to see those young ladies really improve over the course of our short seven week season.”
Powell was able to earn three points.
REPLACE AND RESHUFFLE
The boys finished with a strong conference record and ended up with a third place regular season finish before winning the North Regional Tournament in Gillette while the girls continued to grow after replacing a majority of their roster from the year prior.
Now, both the boys and girls must replace four spots following this season due to graduation, with the girls graduating both singles positions as well as a position each on No. 1 doubles and No. 2 doubles, while the boys must replace No. 1 singles along with one position on each of the doubles teams.
“It’s the nature of high school tennis,” Asay said. “They work their way through high school, grow up and graduate … It’s certainly a hard thing when you look at that last match played on whatever day that might be — kind of a bummer — when you get to spend time with these kids and they demonstrate how great they are as far as being young adults.”
Team standings — 1. Laramie 43, 2. Cheyenne Central 42, 3. Sheridan 34, 4. Jackson 28, 5. Cheyenne East 21, 6. Cheyenne South 20, 7. Powell 17, T8. Cody and Kelly Walsh 10.5, 10. Campbell County 10, 11. Thunder Basin 7, 12. Rock Springs 6, 13. Green River 4.5, 14. Natrona County 4, 15. Torrington 1.5, 16. Rawlins 0
Cade Queen (No. 1 singles) — Queen def. Adam Bartlett (Torrington) 6-1, 6-1; Queen def. Peter Jost (Sheridan) 6-2, 6-1; Paulo Mellizo (Laramie) def. Queen 6-2, 6-7 (4-7), 2-6; Colin Crecelius def. Queen 4-6, 6-3, 0-6
Nathan Preator (No. 2 singles) — Preator def. Tanner Tryzbiak (Rock Springs) 6-0, 6-2; Preator def. Armando Hernandez (Cheyenne East) by DQ; Nathaniel Thornell (Cheyenne Central) def. Preator (1-6, 6-4, 0-6); Charlie Webb (Jackson) def. Preato
Keegan Hicswa/Taeson Schultz (No. 1 doubles) — Hicswa/Schultz def. Chizek/Bergman (Rawlins) 6-0, 6-0; Hicswa/Schultz def. Davies/Swafford (Rock Springs) 6-0, 6-1; Black/Smedley def. Hicswa/Schultz 3-6, 1-6; Hicswa/Schultz def. Dennis/Pikal (Laramie) 6-3, 2-6, 4-6; Barton/Robertson def. Hicswa/Schultz 1-6, 2-6
Seeger Wormald/Ryan Barrus (No. 2 doubles) — Wormald/Barrus def. Baker/Aanerud (Rock Springs) 7-5, 7-5; McCoul/Romer (Kelly Walsh) def. 1-6, 0-6; Wormald/Barrus def. Martin/Beckett (Cheyenne South) 6-3, 6-0; Brown/Seelye (Cheyenne East) def. Wormald/Barrus 1-6, 2-6
Isaac Stensing/Tevon Schultz (No. 3 doubles) — Stensing/Schultz receive bye; Rodriguez/Wiberg def. Stensing/Schultz 7-5, 2-6, 2-6; Stensing/Schultz def. Dodson/Berg (Green River) 6-4, 6-2; Stensing/Schultz def. Coulter/Giron (Laramie) 6-3, 6-1; Aylesworth/Lass def. Stensing/Schultz 7-6 (7-5), 6-7 (5-7), 6-7 (5-7)
Team scores — 1. Cheyenne Central 59, 2. Kelly Walsh 45, 3. Laramie 32, 4. Thunder Basin 26.5, 5. Sheridan 22, 6. Rock Springs 17.5, 7. Cody 16, 8. Jackson 12, 9. Natrona County 10.5, 10. Green River 7, 11. Cheyenne East 3.5, 12. Powell 3, T13. Campbell County and Torrington 2, 15. Rawlins 1, 16. Cheyenne South 0
Lachelle Lee (No. 1 singles) — Mia Wallhead (Laramie) def. Lee 3-6, 6-3, 4-6; Lee receives bye; Madi Katschke (Sheridan) def. Lee 2-6, 5-7
Maya Landwehr (No. 2 singles) — Abby Jones (Rock Springs) def. Landwehr 1-6, 3-6; Landwehr def. Caroline DiSenso (Cheyenne East) 6-1, 6-1; Ellie Garcia def. Landwehr 1-6, 1-6
Lucy Whipple/Naomi Whipple (No. 1 doubles) — Moore/Thorburn (Laramie) def. Whipple/Whipple 1-6, 0-6; Barker/Hitt (Rock Springs) def. Whipple/Whipple 6-2, 2-6, 1-6
Meaghan McKeen/Sophie Czirr (No. 2 doubles) — Proctor/Smith (Laramie) def. McKeen/Czirr 0-6, 3-6; Artery/Sandoval (Cheyenne East) def. McKeen/Czirr 3-6, 2-6
Anneliese Peterson/Kyra Morrow (No. 3 doubles) — Peterson/Morrow def. Frazier/Killpack (Rock Springs) 6-2, 6-2; McGonagle/Dansie (Cody) def. Peterson/Morrow 3-6, 2-6; Peterson/Morrow def. Coombs/Doherty (Thunder Basin) 7-6 (7-5), 6-2; Larsen/Bird (Kelly Walsh) def. Peterson/Morrow 0-6, 5-7