Collegiate gets the better of MHS at league tennis finals

By Steve Sell
May 03, 2016
Kendall Shaw

Wichita Collegiate made a defiant statement here Monday in the Ark Valley Chisholm Trail League Division III-IV Tennis Championships.

Collegiate, which had regained its No. 1 ranking from McPherson in Class 4A on Sunday, solidified it with a scintillating performance to win the title and stamp itself as the team to beat at the state tournament later this month.

The Spartans, whose four entries were all seeded No. 2 while McPherson High was the top seed in each division, swept the championships to win the tournament. They scored 70 points to 60 for the Bullpups, while Buhler was third with 47 and Winfield was fourth with 43.

The other teams were well back with El Dorado (21), Circle (19), Wellington (18) and Augusta (2) completing the field.

“Overall it was a good day, we made it to the finals in every division,” MHS coach Tyler Brown said. “The problem was Collegiate made it to the finals as well in every division. And with no excuses, Collegiate just outplayed us today winning every final. They jumped on us early in almost every final. We did a great job of battling back and getting sets to tiebreakers or even splitting sets with them, but we just couldn't get over the hump.  Hopefully this stings a little bit and we can refocus and be ready for a good week of practice to hopefully play well at regionals.  But Collegiate proved today why they were ranked No. 1 in the polls this past weekend.”

Easily the most exciting final of the day came when Collegiate’s big-hitting Easton Ewy outlasted McPherson’s Jarrod Nowak in the No. 1 singles division. Both sets went to 7-6 tiebreakers, with Ewy winning 7-5 and 9-7.

Collegiate’s Austin Gartner won the No. 2 singles division with a 6-4, 6-1 victory over the Bullpups’ Andrew Snell.

The No. 1 doubles final was another thrilling match that went to three sets. MHS’ Kento Aizawa and Nolan Schrader lost the first set to Collegiate’s Ben Murphy and Lakelin Conrad 6-2, but won the second set 7-6. The Spartan duo won the deciding set, 6-3.

The No. 2 doubles final was another three-setter, with MHS’ Kaden Stewart and Hadley Hageman losing to Andrew Murphy and Matt Regehr, 4-6, 6-4, 3-6.