Girls’ tennis team participates in SD high school tourney

Girls' tennis team participates in SD high school tourney by Jim Prosser Vermillion High School girls' tennis coach Barb Rickord evaluated her charges with a positive tone as they competed in the SD State Tennis Tournament in Sioux Falls Oct. 4-6.

"There were many bright spots for the Tanagers," Rickord said. "I think everyone had fun and enjoyed the state tournament experience � that's most important.

"We also played some excellent matches and in several cases had improved scores against girls we previously had played against," she added. "All the girls played their best tennis in their singles matches and that's a rewarding end to the season."

Maya Ristic, seeded #6, had an excellent tourney, reaching the semi-finals in flight #1, by upsetting #3 seed Kinsley Powers from Rapid City Stevens. Ristic lost in the semis to eventual state champ Liz Donohue from O'Gorman.

"Maya works very hard year around and proved she is one of the best players in the state," Rickord said.

For further proof of that statement, Ristic was the recipient of the annual ASFORA Trophy for accumulating the most points in the summer tournament tour for 16 and under tennis players.

At state, the first round was essentially the elimination competition among the non-seeds.

Singles: Flight #4 Jessica Leffers (V) def. Melody Boerger (Mil) 7-6, 6-3;

Flight #5 Elizabeth Slagle (V) lost to Emily Oldenkamp (Sp) 7-5, 4-6, 7-6;

Flight #6 Michelle Rydell (V) def. Lindsey Friez (Pr) 6-3, 7-5.

Second round involving Tanager players:

Flight #1 Ristic (V) def. Megan Barnett (AbR) 6-1, 6-2;

Flight #2 Catherine Odson (V) lost to Jenna Bakke (Wat) 2-6, 5-7;

Flight #3 Tori Collins (V) lost to Marjorie White (RCC) 0-6, 1-6.

Consolation round three:

Flight #3 Collins eventually reached the consolation semis but lost.

"Collins/Slagle reached the consolation semi-final doubles in flight two," Rickord said. "Although the doubles losses were disappointing, I was very proud of how all the girls played at the tournament."

Round one doubles:

Flight #1 Ristic/Odson (V) lost 4-6, 1-6 to Waltman/Waltman (RCC);

Flight #2 Collins/Slagle (V) lost to Gautier/Harvey (Brk) 4-6, 6-2, 7-6;

Flight #3 Leffers/Rydell (V) lost to Harris/Schulte (STM) 2-6, 6-3, 5-7.

The Tanagers finished the tournament in 16th place out of 22 teams.

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