Chelan Tennis Players Advance to State Qualifier Matches
Information and Photo Submitted by Coach Rothlisberger
Chelan Tennis had a spectacular day at the CTL Tourney on Saturday, May 12. We played excellent tennis, and secured several berths into the district tournament next week.
The purpose of the tournament was as an individual qualifier, the first of three levels of the tennis post-season. The top four finishers in each bracket (girls singles, girls doubles, boys singles, boys doubles) advance to the district tournament next week, which is the qualifier for the state tournament on Memorial Day weekend.
In girls singles:
Sophomore #3 seed Emma McLaren began the day in the semifinals vs #2 seed Skylar Larson of Cashmere, looking to avenge a close loss from May 4th in the regular season finale. Emma opened up the match in great form, winning the first set 6-3. However, Emma would then lose the next 11 games in a row, dropping the 2nd set 0-6, and going down 0-5 in the third set. And then…Emma staged the greatest comeback I’ve ever seen in girls tennis. In the heat, she fought off several match points over the course of several games, went on her own 6 game win streak, and eventually won the match in a 3rd set tiebreaker 7-4. That win placed her in the championship match, where she faced #1 seed and state medalist Aleah Kert of Cashmere. Emma lost to Aleah in straight sets, but will move on to the district tournament as the #2 seed out of the CTL.
In girls doubles:
Chelan had an historic day. We opened Saturday with all three of our doubles teams in the semifinals, possibly a CTL first ever occurrence. Junior Sierra Rothlisberger and senior Madeline Peebles were the #1 seed, and in the semifinals defeated Evans/Vandel of Cascade 6-3, 6-3 to earn a spot in the championship match. The other semifinal featured the two Chelan doubles teams of junior Abby Martin and senior Sydney Hawkins vs freshmen Elle Rothlisberger and Bella Gatzemeier. That Chelan vs Chelan semfinal was closely fought, with Rothlisberger and Gatzemeier winning 6-3, 7-6.
This set up an all Chelan girls doubles championship match that pitted sister vs sister. Sierra and Madeline defeated Elle and Bella 6-2, 6-4 in a closely contested affair to win the CTL girls doubles championship. As a coach and father, that match was a special memory, and definitely a career coaching highlight.
The Chelan girls doubles team of Hawkins and Martin now needed to fight through the consolation bracket, and did so by defeating Hannah Smith and Sarah Dixon of Okanogan 7-6, 7-5. That win clinched a district berth. With a subsequent forfeit by Cascade, Hawkins and Martin earned the #3 seed. So, the three Chelan girls doubles teams took the top three placings in the CTL tourney – once again, possibly a first ever occurrence!
In boys singles:
senior Micah Larson opened the day in the semifinals vs Chase Grillo of Omak. Micah shook off early rust in each set to win 6-2, 6-3, placing him in the finals. In the CTL championship, Micah was defeated by state tourney 2nd place finisher Tyler Kert of Cashmere, but Micah will move on to the district tourney in Omak as the #2 seed from the CTL.
Senior Alex Gavin, facing elimination, opened his Saturday in a do-or-die match vs Cascade, and he soundly defeated his opponent 6-1, 6-1. Unfortunately, in his 2nd match of the day, Alex lost to Grillo of Omak. In his final match on Saturday, Alex claimed 5th place and the alternate spot to districts with a revenge win over Sam Keziah of Cascade 7-5, 6-2 (Alex had lost to Sam earlier in the tourney on Thursday).
In boys doubles:
Junior Wyatt Habich and sophomore Tobin Wier began their day in the semifinals, but were defeated by the #2 seed from Cashmere in straight sets. That forced Habich and Wier to fight through the consolation bracket. In their next do-or-die match, Wyatt and Tobin lost a heartbreaker in three sets. Habich and Wier placed 5th in the tournament, claiming the alternate spot to districts.
The first day of the District 6 tennis tournament (the state tournament qualifier) is Wednesday, May 16 at Omak HS and North Cascades Athletic Club. Day 2 will be next Saturday.
Publishers Note: LakeChelanNow apologizes that we had to crop Bella Gatzmeier out of the feature photo at the top of the story due to image format restrictions. We are pleased to present the entire, uncropped image which includes Ms. Gatzmeier.