HESSTON — History was made on Saturday when Elyria Christian School qualified its first-ever tennis player for state.
Makenzie Archer will be heading to Prairie Village on Friday to compete in the Class 3-2-1A Tournament. She qualified during the regional tournament that was completed on Saturday.
Archer began with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Breanna Fenno of Douglass, then lost in the quarterfinals to Lydia Miller of Sterling (6-7, 3-6), whom she had narrowly defeated just a couple of weeks ago. That meant Archer had to come back through the loser’s bracket if she wanted to move on.
“She was devastated because this was the third year in a row she found herself playing in the same match to go to state,” ECS coach Jeremy Nelson said. “She lost both times she was in this position before. Right before she went on we prayed together. I asked the Lord to help her to stop holding on so tight to the dream of going to state and to just enjoy the game and have fun.”
And did she ever come through.
“In the elimination match she faced Marin McCausland from Wichita Independent. Makenzie played beautifully,” Nelson said. “She dropped the opening game of the first set, but then went on to win six of the next seven games to win the set 6-2. In the second set she kept her foot on the gas and rolled McCausland 6-0 to earn her spot in the state field.”
For good measure, Archer won the fifth-place match by knocking off Mikayla Mendez of Central Plains, 6-1, 6-0.