If the Havre High tennis teams didn’t get what they were hoping for out of last Saturday’s Central A Duals in Lewistown, the Blue Pony boys and girls made up for it in the Electric City Tuesday.
Havre was in Great Falls for duals against Butte Central, as well as Class AA CMR and Great Falls High. And by all accounts, HHS head coach George Ferguson was much more pleased with what he saw.
“We played a lot of tennis Tuesday,” Ferguson said. “And that’s exactly what we needed. I thought we did a much better job of being mentally prepared, of playing better and of making sure we improved. And along the way, we won quite a few matches. So I was happy. It was a good day for us.”
It was an especially good day for the Pony boys, who were never threatened. Havre topped Butte Central 5-2, blanked the Bison 8-0 and took care of CMR 7-1. Individually, sophomores Jeff Miller and Jerod Boles and junior Jamie Lieberg all went undefeated in singles, while senior Zach Hellegaard went 2-1 in three tough battles at the No. 2 spot. In doubles, the No. 2 team of Noah Landgraf and Wyatt Lindbloom continued to impress, going 3-0, while seniors Ned Malone and Brian Smith easily beat rivals from CMR and GFH.
“Our boys did a good job,” Ferguson said. “We were really strong in singles. We only lost one singles match all day. I thought all our boys, win or lose, played very tough and played much cleaner tennis on Tuesday than they did on Saturday.”
On the girls side, the Ponies were missing seniors Brandy Lambourne, Breck Don, Ellery Bresler and Haley Graham. So HHS juggled its lineup quite a bit, and while Havre bounced the Maroons in the morning, 7-0, the Ponies won just one match against the Rustlers and Bison. Havre forfeited two singles spots in the afternoon.
Still, junior Tatiana Ralph was impressive, even in losses to top players from CMR and GFH. Madison Huebsch and Rainey Stoner also won a big match against Butte Central, while Megan Smith won twice for the Blue Ponies in singles. Shannon Herring and Morgan Jappe were also victorious in singles in the morning, and they teamed up in doubles in the afternoon.
“We certainly weren’t at full strength with our girls team, and at this time of year, that’s kind of critical,” Ferguson said. “But on the other side of that coin, every single one of our sophomores got to play a full day of varsity tennis Tuesday, and I was excited about that. That sophomore class is very important to the future of HHS tennis, and they all did a great job on Tuesday. I was really proud of them, and they are improving every time they step on the court.”
Improvement is key for the Blue Ponies right now, and Ferguson said he saw plenty of it on Tuesday, and hopes it continues through this weekend’s Great Falls Invitational.
“I was very happy with the results,” Ferguson said. “The only thing we didn’t get was our dual with Lewistown, and that’s unfortunate because we haven’t really played them straight up this season. But overall, it was a very good day. The kids did a great job, and the best part is, I know we can get even better going forward. Divisionals is right around the corner and getting better every single day is our sole focus right now.”
Havre 5, Butte Central 2
Jeff Miller def. Patrick Kenny, BC, 6-0, 6-2; Jesse Reinke, BC def. Zach Hellegaard, 5-7, 6-2, 10-7; Jerod Boles def. Sam Joyce, BC, 6-0, 6-2; Jamie Lieberg def. Bryce Noctor, BC, 8-4.
Tyler Trudnowski/Kale Guldseth, BC def. Brian Smith/Ned Malone, 6-2, 6-3; Wyatt Lindbloom/Noah Landgraf def. Frank Hendrickson/Sam Stearns, BC, 6-2, 6-2; Jake Sedahl/Nate Korb def. Seth Powers/Jake McPherson, BC, 8-7 (10-8).
Exhibition: Jeff Ralph/Dustin Haas def. Dalton Jensen/Matt Smith, LEW, 7-5.
Havre 8, GFH 0
Jeff Miller def. Kylar Clifton, GFH, 6-1, 6-3; Zach Hellegaard def. Miggy San Pedro, GFH, 6-0, 6-2; Jerod Boles def. Dale Morehousehuffman, GFH, 6-0, 6-1; Jamie Lieberg def. Matt Woods, GFH, 8-4.
Ned Malone/Brian Smith def. Dennis Berczyk/Chase Perry, GFH, 6-2, 6-0; Wyatt Lindbloom/Noah Landgraf def. Blade Massey/Kyle Wanner, GFH, 6-0, 6-1; Jake Sedahl/Nate Korb def. Juan Kuka/John Bozeman, GFH, 6-1 6-3; Jeff Ralph/Dustin Haas def. Victor Fulcher/Noah Nelson, 8-3.
Havre 7, CMR 1
Jeff Miller def. Ashad Khattak, CMR, 6-0, 6-2; Zach Hellegaard def. Soren Ormseth, CMR, 6-1, 6-4; Jerod Boles def. Ian DeBoo, CMR, 6-2, 6-2; Jamie Lieberg def. Asher Lynde, CMR, 8-6.
Ned Malone/Brian Smith def. Jacob Bernhardt/Griff Malloy, CMR, 6-2, 6-1; Wyatt Lindbloom/Noah Landgraf def. Lane Maxwell/Cole Funseth, CMR, 6-3, 6-1; Leonard Ormseth/Kyle Korb, CMR def. Jake Sedahl/Nate Korb, 7-5, 6-3; Dustin Haas/Jeff Ralph def. Brett Lawson/Stuart Gray, CMR, 8-7 (7-5).
Havre 7, Butte Central 0
Tatiana Ralph def. Mediros Babb, BC, 6-2, 6-0; Shannon Herring def. Sarah Drew, BC, 6-1, 7-5; Morgan Jappe def. Kelsey Quinn, BC, 6-3, 6-3; Megan Smith def. Kaylee Simkins, BC, 6-3, 4-6, 11-9.
Rainey Stoner/Madison Huebsch def. Ali Guldseth/Larisa Blatskey, BC, 6-2, 6-2; Alara Vogel/Ashley Hoffland def. Ryan Trudnowski/Megan McPherson, BC, 6-2, 6-0; Kaylee Nash/Corttney Gobin def. Mary Beth Lyons/Katie Mathhes, BC, 6-7, 6-4, 10-2.
GFH 7, Havre 1
(Havre forfeited No. 2 and No. 4 singles)
Abigail Davidson, GFH def. Tatiana Ralph, 6-2, 6-0; Megan Smith def. Delaney Leo, 8-5.
Brooke Dart/Bailee Roady, GFH def. Morgan Jappe/Shannon Herring, 2-6, 6-3, 10-4; Steph Fellows/Emma Madsen, GFH def. Rainey Stoner/Madison Huebsch, 7-5, 6-2; Hannah Willis/Mikayla Thurston, GFH def. Alara Vogel/Ashley Hoffland, 6-3, 6-2; Rina Chung/Hareen Seerhe, GFH def. Kaylee Nash/Corttney Gobin, 8-7 (7-4).
CMR 8, Havre 0
(Havre forfeited No. 2 and No. 4 singles)
Lindsey Martinez, CMR def. Tatiana Ralph, 6-0, 6-0; Ralph def. Elea Roberts, CMR, 8-3 in an exhibition; Brooke Gowins, CMR def. Megan Smith, 6-1, 6-0; Justine Runkel, CMR def. Smith, 8-6 in exhibition.
Karly Thompson/Lindsey Pyette, CMR def. Shannon Herring/Morgan Jappe, 6-4, 6-2; Kyla Campbell/Erynn Murphy, CMR def. Rainey Stoner/Madison Huebsch, 7-5, 6-0; Maddie Russell/Quincey Boggart, CMR def. Alara Vogel/Ashley Hoffland, 6-0, 6-1; Paige Kujala/Tasha Schalin, CMR def. Kaylee Nash/Corttney Gobin, 8-2.