The Havre High boys and girls tennis teams are very busy right now. And the Blue Ponies took a big step forward this past weekend in Cut Bank.
The Ponies were in Cut Bank for the annual Class A Duals Friday-Saturday, and combined, they went 7-1 in boys and girls competition. And while HHS head coach George Ferguson was excited his team won so many matches against all Northwest A competition, he was even more excited with how his players won those matches.
“This was a great weekend,” Ferguson said. “Our kids played extremely well from the top of our lineup to the bottom. We were up against unfamiliar opponents for the most part, it was our first time playing all Class A teams, and the wind was once again really tough. And our kids did great. I was very excited about the way we played tennis collectively this weekend, and I’m really proud of what we achieved.”
The HHS boys were a perfect 4-0 in Cut Bank, and the Ponies got the weekend started with a 4-3 win over defending state champion Polson. Havre then turned right around and bested Columbia Falls 6-1, while the Pony boys returned to Cut Bank on Saturday to beat Whitefish 4-3 and Libby 6-1.
Sophomore Jeff Miller went 4-0 at the No. 1 singles spot, including wins over Polson’s Dylan McCrumb, who was the Class A singles runner-up a year ago. Jerod Boles also went 4-0, at the No. 3 spot for the Ponies, while Zach Hellegaard was 2-2 at No. 2. In doubles, Ned Malone and Brian Smith went 3-1, losing only a close match to a top Polson duo. Wyatt Lindbloom and Noah Landgraf were a perfect 4-0 in doubles, while the freshmen duo of Jake Sedahl and Nate Korb won three times.
“Our boys did a great job,” Ferguson said. “The competition at the top of the duals was really good, and that’s what makes what Jeff, as well as Ned and Brian and Wyatt and Noah did so impressive. They all played very well against top, state-caliber competition.
“But win or lose, I was pleased with how all of our boys played,” he continued. “I saw a lot of quality tennis from every boy on our team, even in the matches we didn’t win. I thought we made a lot of progress in Cut Bank and we will continue to do that.”
Havre’s girls were equally impressive. The Ponies, even without the senior doubles team of Morgan Jappe and Haley Graham, fell to Polson 4-3, but walloped Columbia Falls 7-0 Friday and HHS beat Whitefish 4-3 and Libby 6-1 Saturday.
Individually, Brandy Lambourne and Tatiana Ralph were both a perfect 4-0 in singles, while seniors Ellery Bresler and Breck Don were a perfect 4-0 at No. 1 doubles. Shannon Herring went 2-2 at No. 3 singles while Rainey Stoner and Madison Huebsch went 2-2 at No. doubles. And, overall, every Blue Pony girl or doubles team won at least one match or more over the four duals.
“Our girls played great,” Ferguson said. “To play four teams from the Northwest A and to go unbeaten at No. 1 and No. 2 singles and No. 1 doubles, that tells me we’re on the right track right now.
“But just like the boys team, I thought all of our girls played really well,” he continued. “I thought everybody improved from last week and that was the goal. We had five sophomores with us this weekend, and they all stepped up and did a great job, so I was really proud of our girls team.”
Ferguson was also impressed with how his teams played given the fact that most players and doubles teams only had three or four matches under their belt heading into the weekend. Havre was forced to move the Havre Invitational to today, and that’s normally the tournament before the Class A Invite.
“I think our kids showed they are focused and determined,” Ferguson said. “We basically missed an entire week of practice at the start of the weekend, and then we didn’t get a chance to play the Havre Invite ahead of this weekend. So to go to Cut Bank and play Class A teams as well as we did, that speaks to how hard all of our kids are working and how focused they are. I’m really proud of our team for how they played this weekend, and hopefully that good play carries over into our home tournament.”
The Havre Invitational runs all day today at the Bill Vaughey Memorial Tennis Courts and the two courts at Montana State University-Northern. The Blue Ponies are in Lewistown this Saturday for the Central A Duals.
Class A Duals
Polson 4, Havre 3
Brandy Lambourne def. Marlee Congdon, POL, 8-2; Tatiana Ralph def. Lauren Dupuis, POL, 8-2; Olivia Hewston, POL def. Shannon Herring, 8-3; Kaitlyn Kackmann, POL def. Megan Smith, 8-1.
Ellery Bresler/Breck Don def. Carlyle/Rochin, POL, 8-5; Lemm/Lenz, POL def. Rainey Stoner/Madison Huebsch, 8-5; Madsen/Seamann, POL def. Hoffland/Vogel, 8-1.
Havre 7, Columbia Falls 0
Brandy Lambourne def. Emily Getts, CF, 8-2; Tatiana Ralph def. Hailey Sapa, CF, 8-4; Shannon Herring def. Kaylee Flaningan, CF, 8-2; Megan Smith def. D'Tilia Deries, CF, 8-3.
Ellery Bresler/Breck Don def. Elizabeth Jackson/Baylee Brinton, CF, 8-1; Rainey Stoner/Madison Huebsch def. Samantha Gilk/Shelby Anderson, CF, 8-3; Ashley Hoffland/Alara Vogel def. Olivia Lewis-Peterson/Tarah Hoyt, CF, 8-3.
Havre 4, Whitefish 3
Brandy Lambourne def. Simone Craft, WF, 8-3; Tatiana Ralph def. Addie Elm, WF, 8-1; Shannon Herring def. Keara Delaney, WF, 8-2; McKenna Benbrook, WF def. Megan Smith 8-2.
Ellery Bresler/Breck Don def. Heather Luedke/Caroline Carbo, WF, 8-4; Mckenzie Wick/Anna Peterson, WF def. Rainey Stoner/Madison Huebsch, 8-5; Annika Gordon/Emma Nixon, WF def. Ashley Hoffland/Alara Vogel, 8-4.
Havre 6, Libby 1
Brandy Lambourne def. Melanie Thomas, LIB, 8-2; Tatiana Ralph def. Kaylene Hudson, LIB, 8-6; Sarah McBride, LIB def. Shannon Herring, 8-6; Megan Smith def. Katie Alspaw, LIB, 8-0.
Ellery Bresler/Breck Don def. Jenna Barrick/Mckenzie Cosgroff, LIB, 8-1; Rainey Stoner/Madison Huebsch def. Dani Hawthorne/Cloie Boardner, LIB, 8-1; Ashley Hoffland/Alara Vogel def. Ally Buckner/Joelina Lawrence, LIB, 8-6.
Havre 4, Polson 3
Jeff Miller def. Dylan McCrumb, POL, 8-2; Layne Zimmerman, POL def. Zach Hellegaard, 8-4; Jerod Boles def. Thomas Crosby, POL, 8-1; Cadis Chowning, POL def. Jamie Lieberg, 8-3.
Brady Hislop/Tyler Dupuis, POL def. Ned Malone/Brian Smith, 8-6 ; Wyatt Lindbloom/Noah Landgraf def. Matt Sitter/Colin Kenney, POL, 8-5 ; Jame Sedahl/Nate Korb def. Josh Kinzle/Nick Becker, POL, 8-2.
Havre 6, Columbia Falls 1
Jeff Miller def. Gavin Thelen, CF, 8-2 ; Zach Hellegaard def. Grant Wallace, CF, 8-0 ; Jerod Boles def. Jayden Wirkus, CF, 8-1 ; Brock Denny, CF def. Jamie Lieberg, 8-7 (6).
Ned Malone/Brian Smith def. Caleb Banwann/Mason Geldman, CF, 8-3; Wyatt Lindbloom/Noah Landgraf def. Evan Wells/Thanakorn Naunphong, CF, 8-3; Jake Sedahl/Nate Korb def. Paxton Fisher/Patrick Tilleman, CF, 8-0.
Havre 4, Whitefish 3
Jeff Miller def. Logan Blades, WF, 8-3; Holden Roberts, WF def. Zach Hellegaard, 8-5; Jerod Boles def. Nathan Frauth, WF, 8-5; Chaffin Ross, WF def. Jamie Lieberg, 8-2.
Ned Malone/Brian Smith def. Bailey Jack/Tommy Murphy, WF, 8-3; Wyatt Lindbloom/Noah Landgraf def. Ryan Brown/Jack Brandt, WF, 8-6; Ethan Pothoff/Jack Kahle, WF def. Jake Sedahl/Nate Korb, 8-2.
Havre 6, Libby 1
Jeff Miller def. Jason Schanckenberg, LIB, 8-2; Zach Hellegaard def. Cody Wood, LIB, 8-3; Jerod Boles def. Colin Maloney, LIB, 8-1; Adam Kirschenmann, LIB def. Jeff Ralph, 8-2.
Ned Malone/Brian Smith def. Kody Bailey/Jason Brant, LIB, 8-2; Wyatt Lindbloom/Noah Landgraf def. Ryan Nagle/Gabe Peck, LIB, 8-1; Jake Sedahl/Nate Korb def. Dameon Kelch/Raymond Sadewasser, LIB, 8-1.