The Havre High boys and girls tennis teams were hoping for a full day of duals Saturday in Lewistown, but rain forced the Blue Ponies to take what they could get.
Havre was set to square off against Central A rivals Livingston, Anaconda and Lewistown for the only times this season, but rainy weather forced some of the day to be called off.
Still, the HHS boys did top Anaconda 5-2 and won four of five matches against Livingston. On the girls side, the Ponies beat the Copperheads 5-2, but were down to Livingston 2-3 when the day was called off due to rain. Havre will look to get its only full dual against Lewistown in Tuesday in Great Falls.
“It was a difficult day,” said HHS head coach George Ferguson. “It was wet and cold and the conditions were tough. I also felt like we did not play our best tennis of the season. Yes, weather has something to do with it, but it’s equally challenging for our opponents. We just didn’t have our best day, and that’s not what we were hoping for. We had been on a roll the last two weeks, and while I don’t think we took a step back Saturday, we didn’t make any progress either.”
Individually, undefeated Blue Pony sophomore Jeff Miller remained dominant with two easy victories. Also in singles, Jamie Lieberg and Jerod Boles won twice, while senior Zach Hellegaard played back-to-back marathons, winning a third-set tiebreak against Anaconda, but losing in one to Livingston. In doubles, juniors Noah Landgraf and Wyatt Lindbloom won twice, while Ned Malone and Brian Smith split as did Jake Sedahl and Nate Korb. Malone and Smith lost a third-set tiebreak to a tough team from Anaconda.
“Our boys played well at times, but at other times, we just came up short in a few areas. I thought our focus and effort was very good, but at times, we were just a little off, and in some of those tight matches, that cost us. So there was some positives, but we also exposed some areas that we need to get cleaned up in the next week.”
On the girls side, Brandy Lambourne and Tatiana Ralph were each 2-0, while Ashley Hoffland also won a singles match. In doubles, Havre struggled at times, losing two matches at the No. 1 spot, while Haley Graham and Shannon Herring and Madison Huebsch and Rainey Stoner each split. Herring normally plays singles, but partnered with Graham while her partner, Morgan Jappe was out with illness.
“Our girls team had a similar day to our boys,” Ferguson said. “We had our good moments. Everybody played well in spurts. But we also had some setbacks. In watching all of the matches Saturday, I felt like we had the best 10 girls tennis players on the courts, but we didn’t play like it enough. So it was a good experience for our girls in that, at this point in the season, we have to be at our best each and every time we step on the court.
“And for both our boys and girls teams, we’ll move forward,” he continued. “We have another really busy week ahead of us, and we will work hard to make the progress we should be making at this point. That’s the great thing about our kids, they learn, work hard and go forward, and I know they will this week.”
Havre is right back in action with four duals Tuesday in Great Falls. The Ponies will be back in Great Falls Friday and Saturday for the Great Falls Invitational.
Central A Duals
Havre 5, Anaconda 2
Jeff Miller def. Carson Boynton, ANA, 6-2, 6-1; Zach Hellegaard def. Eli Van Meel, ANA, 6-7 (5-7), 6-3, 10-4; Jerod Boles won by FFT, def. Kody Neel 6-1, 6-1 in exhibition match; Jamie Lieberg def. Justin Steppler, ANA, 6-0, 6-0.
Jackson Wagner/Dennis Stansberry, ANA def. Ned Malone/Brian Smith, 1-6, 6-4, 10-8; Wyatt Lindbloom/Noah Landgraf def. Ben Schaeffer/Ryan Leppola, ANA, 4-6, 6-2, 10-6; Gabe Blodnik/Tre Kincaid, ANA def. Jake Sedahl/Nate Korb, 1-6, 6-4, 10-4.
Havre 4, Livingston 1
(Dual Incomplete due to weather)
Jeff Miller def. John Potenberg, LIV, 6-2, 6-2; Vance Noble, LIV def. Zach Hellegaard, 6-2, 4-6, 10-5; Jerod Boles def. Parker Phillips, LEW, 6-2, 2-6, 11-9 in exhibition match; Jamie Lieberg def. , LEW, 8-6 in exhibition match.
Ned Malone/Brian Smith def. Callum Gannon/Garret Schweigert, LIV, 6-0, 6-0; Wyatt Lindbloom/Noah Landgraf def. Colton Carter/Karl Molina, LIV, 6-4, 6-1; Jake Sedahl/Nate Korb def. Alex Swanson/Mitch Eurlich, LIV, 6-1, 6-3.
Havre 5, Anaconda 2
Brandy Lambourne def. Destiny Strutzel, ANA, 6-2, 6-1; Tatiana Ralph def. Rose Tracy, ANA< 6-2, 6-2; Aeriala Wood, ANA def. Megan Smith, 1-6, 6-4, 10-4; Ashley Hoffland def. Lisa Hammer, ANA, 6-3, 6-4.
Dallas Salle/Ashley Johnson, ANA def. Breck Don/Ellery Bresler, 6-0, 6-0; Haley Graham/Shannon Herring def. Halee Davis/Molly Gruruud, ANA, 5-7, 6-3, 10-4; Rainey Stoner/Madison Huebsch def. Aspen Davies/Lacee Paffenberger, ANA, 6-0, 6-2.
Livingston 3, Havre 2
(Dual incomplete due to weather)
Brandy Lambourne, HAV def. Shelly Ovelette, LIV, 6-1, 6-2; Tatiana Ralph def. Olivia Hintz, LIV, 6-3, 6-2.
Emilee Coleman/Marial Kelly, LIV def. Breck Don/Ellery Bresler, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5); Lindsey Lane/Tegan Lane, LIV def. Haley Graham/Shannon Herring, 6-3, 6-2; Lindzie Pruitz/Brittni Phillips, LIV def. Rainey Stoner/Madison Huebsch, 6-4, 6-1.