VALLEY CENTER — Stepping up in class didn’t bother the Hesston boys tennis team on Thursday.
The Swathers took first place in the Andover Invitational contested at Valley Center. The were eight teams, many of them Class 5A schools.
Hesston scored 21 points to nip Andover Central, which scored 20. Other totals were Wichita Independent (19), Goddard Eisenhower (18), Andover White (12), Andover Blue (11), Valley Center (9) and Wellington (6).
The Swathers took second place in three of the four divisions. Isaac Penner stepped into the No. 1 singles role and went 2-1, losing 8-7 in the finals to Wonjoon Cho of Wichita Independent in a thrilling match.
“Isaac played his best tennis of the year today,” Hesston coach Mark Dahlsten said.
Jorge Morales saw his first varsity action and was 2-1 at No. 2 singles, losing 8-2 in the finals to Braeden Mueller of Wichita Independent. “Jorge made his varsity debut one to remember,” Dahlsten said. “He played very well and showed great poise.”
The No. 2 doubles team of Gus Williams and Daniel Holthus was 2-1 for second place. “Gus and Daniel had a very solid day again today,” Dahlsten said.
David Geidel and Kendrick Weaver were 2-1 at No. 1 doubles for fifth. “They played with much more aggressiveness in their last two matches,” Dahlsten said.
Dahlsten’s team took first even though both his No. 1 singles player and No. 1 doubles team sat this one out.
“I am very pleased to have won the tournament, especially considering that we didn’t play our regular 1’s,” he said. “That shows the type of depth we have this year. These guys stepped up and played very well.”