Buhler, Griffin lead SHS regional tennis charge
FARMER’S KORNER – The quest to make it two straight years that the Summit High School tennis team has sent a representative to the state tournament commences today.The Tigers’ seven singles and doubles seeds open play in the 10-team regional tournament in Denver with potential to make some noise, but as longshots overall. “I would say that’s a good way of describing it,” SHS coach Rae Anderson said.
Yet even though none is seeded higher than sixth in their respective brackets, there is hope. Summit senior Julie Wallace advanced to state last year in the No. 2 singles division, despite entering regionals as the fourth seed. In doing so she became the first SHS player in at least five years to make state.This year, the Tigers coach Anderson points toward two more seniors, No. 1 doubles pair Shannon Buhler and Sara Griffin, as Summit’s best state shot. Buhler and Griffin enter as the No. 6 seed in their division. The top two finishers in each bracket of regional play – which continues on Thursday – will advance to the state tournament on May 12-14.”If they play well they have a good shot at doing it,” Anderson said.
Although Buhler and Griffin will have to play the top seed in their division, a pair from state powerhouse Kent Denver, it might work to their advantage. Based on the tournament’s complicated “playback” format, players that lose to an eventual finals competitor can in some cases get another shot at qualifying for state.Among the rest of Summit’s regional hopes, two others are also seeded sixth: the No. 3 doubles tandem of senior Rachel Bergstrom and freshman Megan Hollenbeck, and the No. 4 doubles pair of junior Tessa Manton and freshman Marie Oberriter. Like Buhler and Griffin, they will also face a top-seeded Kent Denver duo in their first match.Summit’s No. 1 and 2 singles players, freshmen Carly Walsh and Alex Critz-Culp, both are seeded eighth and will face the No. 10 seeds in their division, with a date against one of the top seeds awaiting them if they win.
Senior Jessica Oberriter, Summit’s No. 3 singles player, enters the regional tournament as the No. 9 seed in her division. Mandy Miles and Carrie George, the No. 2 doubles tandem for SHS, are seeded 10th in their bracket.The tournament will be split between Kent Denver and the Cherry Hills Country Club.Devon O’Neil can be contacted at (970) 668-3998, ext. 231, or at email@example.com.
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