Havre Daily News
For the first time all spring, both the Havre High boys and girls tennis teams got to see how they stacked up against their peers as the Ponies played five duals in two days against Class A competition at the Mayfair Invitational in Billings.
The Havre high girls team came out of Billings with a spotless record going, 5-0. The HHS boys also went 5-0 on the weekend, but HHS head coach George Ferguson said that the two teams went about going undefeated in two different ways.
“Our girls team has been progressing nicely all season and this weekend they took another positive step,” Ferguson said. “The girls won most of their duals and a lot of their matches in pretty convincing fashion this weekend. That tells me that they are really starting to peak at the right time.
“The boys team also had a good weekend, but it was somewhat up and down,” he added. “We won all our duals, but several of them came down to the last match. So on one hand, we're glad that the kids who were put in a position to win the dual did so. But we also lost a lot of close matches and a lot of matches where we had big leads and that is something we really have to bear down and work on over the next two weeks.”
On Friday, the Havre High girls opened the tournament with its closest dual of the weekend, a 4-3 win over host Billings Central. The Ponies got key wins from Hope Hedges and Jocelyn Chagnon.
On Friday night, Havre blitzed defending Class A state champion Dillon, 6-1. Havre's only loss came in the much-anticipated first meeting between the doubles teams of Steph Flatau and Keelie Solomon and Dillon's Eve Xanthopolous and Theresa Bennett. Dillon got the better of Havre in the match, but Ferguson said that the scores did not indicate how close things really were.
“No matter how lopsided the score in that match was, I know Steph and Keelie had a chance to win the first set and then who knows what would have happened,” Ferguson said. “They had chances to win five different games which would have completely flipped the score in the opening set.
“They played very well, but we just came up short on five or six points that would have completely changed the complexion of the match,” he added. “So Steph and Keelie have nothing to hang their heads about.”
On Saturday, the HHS girls breezed to three straight wins over Glendive, Miles City and Lewistown. Over the course of the three duals, Havre dropped only three of 21 matches on the day. Katie Mariani and Haley McLain went undefeated at No. 1 and No. 2 singles, respectively. And all three of Havre's doubles teams were perfect as well.
“The girls played really outstanding tennis on Saturday,” Ferguson said. “Katie and Haley were at the top of their game against some pretty good opponents.
“And our doubles teams were also outstanding as we expected them to be,” he added. “We are getting some very good production out of Karissa Olson and Alexa Lipp and Kari Gorder and Kristi Hollingshead. Those four have made us very tough to beat in doubles in a dual format.”
On the boys side, Havre had to scratch and fight for two 4-3 wins on Friday over Billings Central and Lewistown. Havre's singles players struggled on Friday against the Rams and they also suffered several upsets against Central A rival Lewistown on Friday night.
But the doubles tandems of John Christian and Billy Wagner, Ryan Kinholt and Todd Roe and David Zentmire and Jordan Croft proved that the Ponies do have some depth despite being such a young team overall. All three HHS doubles squads were perfect on Friday, and Roe and Kinholt and Croft and Sheppard were perfect for the entire tournament.
Friday night was also highlighted by Christian and Wagner's dramatic three-set victory over Lewistown's Stephen and Matt Gruener, who are widely considered the favorites to capture the Class A doubles crown in three weeks.
“John and Billy haven't been playing together very long,” Ferguson said. “But they are really coming into their own and their win over the Grueners validates that. When they are playing well, they are a very tough team to beat.
“I think this weekend showed that like the girls team, our boys team is really starting to take shape in doubles. We just put Ryan Kinholt and Todd Roe together and they played very well. And I can't say enough about the job that David Zentmire and Jordan Croft did. They didn't just go undefeated this weekend, they also sealed several duals for us against in some pretty high-pressure situations.”
On Saturday, Havre downed Cody, Wyo., 5-2 and blanked Glendive 7-0. The Ponies finished up their day late with a 4-3 win over Hardin. In the Hardin dual, freshmen singles players Shane Kemmer and Mason Sheppard provided Havre with two critical wins.
“I think from a confidence standpoint this was a really good weekend for our boys team,” Ferguson said. “Everyone did something to contribute to going 5-0 this weekend. We have some things to work on before we get to divisionals, but I think we started to turn a corner in Billings.”
Havre will be in Lewistown on Saturday for its final regular season meet. The Lewistown Invitational is another dual tournament and the Ponies are scheduled to play four times on the day.
Girls Final Standings
Havre 5-0, Billings Central 4-1, Dillon 3-1, Glendive 3-2, Miles City 2-1, Livingston 1-1, Hardin 1-4, Lewistown 1-5, Cody 0-4.
Havre 4, Billings Central 3
Laura Housinger, BC def. Katie Mariani, HAV, 6-1, 6-1; Brittany Hatzell, BC def. Haley McLain, HAV, 6-1, 6-4; Hope Hedges, HAV def. Katie Dahlin, BC, 6-0, 6-4; Jocelyn Chagnon, HAV def. Allie Karls, BC, 6-4, 6-0.
Steph Flatau/Keelie Solomon, HAV def. Whitney Whilbert/Zahriah Zimmer, BC, 5-7, 7-5, 8-6; Emily Schwarz/Amy Milikan, BC def. Kari Gorder/Kristi Hollingshead, HAV, NA; Karissa Olson/Alexa Lipp, HAV def. Leslie Diedrich/Sara Diedrich, BC, 6-0, 6-0.
Havre 6, Dillon 1
Katie Mariani, HAV def. Katie Hansen, DIL, 6-4, 6-2; Haley McLain, HAV def. Kathrine Bonnin, DIL, 6-4, 6-2; Hope Hedges, HAV def. Sammie Mitchell, DIL, 6-0, 6-0; Jocelyn Chagnon, HAV def. Rosie Guiterriz, DIL, 6-3, 6-3.
Eve Xanthopoulos/ Theresa Bennett, DIL def. Steph Flatau/Keelie Solomon, HAV, 6-1, 6-1; Kari Gorder/Kristi Hollingshead, HAV def. Anna Brommer/Kelsi Nordahl, DIL, 6-2, 6-3; Karissa Olson/Alexa Lipp, HAV def. Alysa Baker/Haidre Bietrich, DIL, 6-1, 6-0.
Havre 5, Glendive 2
Katie Mariani, HAV def. Mariah Linn, GLE, 6-1, 6-3; Haley Mclain, HAV def. Bethany Orcutt, GLE, 6-3, 6-1; megan Geiger, GLE def. Hope Hedges, HAV, 6-1, 6-1; Ashlea Duke, GLE def. Jocelyn Chagnon, HAV, 6-4, 7-5.
Steph Flatau/Keelie Solomon, HAV def. Addie Lordemann/Cienna Nielsen, GLE, 6-4, 6-2; Kari Gorder/Kristi Hollingshead, HAV def. Jayla Dowson/Leann Athas, GLE, 6-7 (7-5), 6-2, 10-12; Karissa Olson/Alexa Lipp, HAV def. Katie Shephard/Megan Denning, GLE, 6-3, 6-1.
Havre 7, Miles City 0
Katie Mariani, HAV def. Severs Vanderesch, MC, 6-1, 6-1; Haley McLain, HAV def. Kaci Kukowski, MC, 6-3, 6-2; Hope Hedges, HAV def. Amanda Wickham, MC, 6-1, 6-1; Brandi Parks, MC def. Jocelyn Chagnon, HAV, 6-0, 7-5.
Keelie Solomon/Steph Flatau, HAV def. Hailey Hammon/Tiffany Tryon, MC, 7-5, 6-1; Kari Gorder/Kristi Hollingshead, HAV def. Heather Fischer/Marisa Steadman, MC, 7-6 (7-2), 6-1; Karissa Olson/Alexa Lipp, HAV def. Laura Marnin/Krissy Marnin, MC, 6-2, 6-0.
Havre 6, Lewistown 1
Katie Mariani, HAV def. Diamond Braine, LEW, 8-0; Haley McLain, HAV def. Kylie Jimmerson, LEW, 8-1; Hope Hedges, HAV def. Allisyn Bent, LEW, 8-0; Jessica Martin, HAV def. Jocelyn Chagnon, HAV, 8-5.
Steph Flatau/Keelie Solomon, HAV def. Ashley Boettger/Merrick Carpenter, LEW, 8-4; Kristi Hollingshead/Kari Gorder, HAV def. Emily Gordon/Brianne Schwomeyer, LEW, 8-6; Karissa Olson/Alexa Lipp, HAV def. Chelsie Messer/Risa Stivers, LEW, 8-2.
Boys Final Standings
Havre 5-0, Lewistown 4-1, Billings Central 4-2; Hardin 4-2; Glendive 2-4, Cody 1-5, Miles City 0-3, Livingston 0-3.
Havre 4, Billings Central 3
Alex Powers, BC def. Chase Castloo, HAV, 6-4, 6-0; Jordan Hatzell, BC def. Scott Miller, HAV, 6-0, 6-0; Rob Fust, BC def. Shane Kemmer, HAV, 4-6, 7-5, 10-8; Mason Sheppard, HAV def. Dawson Green, BC, 6-2, 6-1.
John Christian/Billy Wagner, HAV def. Brian Robbins/Isaac Boheman, BC, 6-1, 6-1; Todd Roe/Ryan Kinholt, HAV def. Bryce Bonke/Eamon Claney, BC, 7-5, 5-7, 10-5; Jordan Croft/David Zentmire, HAV def. Mark Halverson/Geoff Cunningham, BC, 6-3, 6-4.
Havre 4, Lewistown 3
Brandon Hemseth, LEW def. Chase Castloo, HAV, 6-2, 6-2; Shane Parker, LEW def. Scott Miller, HAV, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3; Shane Kemmer, HAV def. Cameron McCleery, LEW, 6-3, 6-2; Justin Hartford, LEW def. Mason Sheppard, 6-4, 7-5.
John Christian/Billy Wagner, HAV def. Stephen Gruener/Matt Gruener, LEW, 3-6, 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (7-5); Todd Roe/Ryan Kinholt, HAV def. Levi Driskell/Shane Emerson, LEW, 6-4, 6-3; Jordan Croft/David Zentmire, HAV def. Dale Walker, Andy Levin, LEW, 6-3, 6-2.
Havre 5, Cody, WY 2
Alex Beaverson, COD def. Shane Kemmer, HAV, 3-6, 7-5, 11-9; Scott Miller, HAV def. Ryan Hayes, COD, 6-1, 6-0; Mason Sheppard, HAV def. Jacob Weich, COD, 6-2, 4-6, 10-8; Chase Castloo, HAV def. Daniel Sinner, COD, 6-1, 6-0.
Tanner Moirell/Ben Ross, COD def. John Christian/Billy Wagner, HAV, 6-3, 6-4; Todd Roe/Ryan Kinholt, HAV def. Doug Sherpfmann/Travis Rongler, COD, 6-3, 6-0; Jordan Croft/David Zentmire, HAV def. Troy Avthelm/David Bana, COD, 6-1, 6-1.
Havre 7, Glendive 0
Chase Castloo, HAV def. Blake Anderson, GLE, 6-3, 6-4; Scott Miller, HAV def. Tanner Tinges, GLE, 6-1, 6-2; Shane Kemmer, HAV def. Brett Patterson, GLE, 6-0, 6-2; Mason Sheppard, HAV def. Caleb Zody, GLE, 7-6 (7-5), 6-4.
John Christian/Billy Wagner, HAV def. Alex Tsomaya/Drew Turner, GLE, 6-4, 6-4; Todd Roe/Ryan Kinholt, HAV def. Shay Williamson/Brent Dion, GLE, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3; Jordan Croft/David Zentmire, HAV def. Brett Harrison/Brent Dion, GLE, 6-2, 6-2.