Sometimes McPherson High tennis coach Tyler Brown feels like a kid in a candy store.
With such a deep team, Brown entered both a Red and White team on Saturday in the Bullpups’ final home invitational of the season.
The MHS Red responded by winning the meet with 83 points and the White team performed admirably by scoring 43 points for sixth.
“With such great depth, I wish the season was longer so I could keep looking at options for regionals and state,” said Brown, whose team has been ranked No. 1 in Class 4A all season. “But it is a great problem to have. I was able to see many McPherson vs. McPherson matches because of that depth.”
The Bullpups were successful even though standout singles player Katlyn Reifschneider missed the meet to rest her ailing shoulder. Reifschneider was sixth in the state last year.
Brown said it’s MHS’ depth that makes it shine in meets like this as the team prepares well.
“Not only playing ourselves in meets like this, but the every day grind in practice of having good competition every day is what makes our team so good,” Brown said. “The sad part will be when seven of my 14 players will be leaving us next year. So you middle school players pick up that racquet and be a part of something great.”
MHS’ Ellea Ediger was the singles champion with an 8-3 victory in the finals over Derby’s Ashley Sherrow, one of the better players in Class 6A. Riley Burghart was 10th in singles as she stepped in for Reifschneider. Shelby Gudenkauf was a place behind in 11th for the MHS White team, Heidi Myers was 14th and open entry Madison Schmidt was 18th.
In doubles, the Bullpups’ defending Class 4A state champions Emily Ediger and Camry Holle lost a tough 8-7 decision in the finals to a top-notch Class 5A team of Macy Moyers and Morgan Francis of Great Bend.
The Bullpups’ second doubles entry of Madison Hofman and Rachel Ivers took fifth.
For the MHS White, Cassidy Corrigan and Maisie Edmonson placed eighth, while Ashley Venable and Caroline May took 13th
Derby (66) was second, followed by Newton (61). Rounding out the team scores were Garden City (53), Salina South (50), MHS White (43), Campus (39), Great Bend (35), Hutchinson (34), Hays (31) and Liberal (11).
MHS competes Monday in the AVCTL Division III-IV Championships at Wichita Collegiate, which is ranked No. 1 in Class 3-2-1A and figures to battle the Bullpups for supremacy.