ARKANSAS CITY — When a vital cog is missing out of a well-oiled machine, it can throw off the entire running of the operation.
McPherson High’s girls tennis team was without Ellea Ediger — last year’s Class 4A singles runner-up — due to illness Thursday in the Arkansas City Invitational.
The Bullpups, expected to make a run at the title, fell back to a tie for sixth place with Salina South with 76 points. Ahead of them were Andover (116), Arkansas City (94), Carroll (88), Winfield (77) and Andover Central (77). There were 16 teams total.
“I think if I was able to have a healthy Ellea Ediger make the trip, we would of maybe took third as a team, maybe even second, but sickness caused havoc for team points,” MHS coach Tyler Brown said.
Last year’s Class 4A doubles champions Camry Holle and Emily Ediger went 3-2 for fourth place as the field was chockfull of talented duos. Rachel Ivers and Katlyn Reifschneider, playing together for the first time, went 3-2 for seventh.
In singles, Riley Burghart (2-3) and Madison Hoffman (3-2) were 14th and 19th, respectively.
MHS competes Saturday at Smoky Valley. Ten teams are expected to be in the field.