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By Jaryd Cline
Sports editor 

Girls tennis starting season strong with hopes for district title

 

March 21, 2018

Jaryd Cline

Goldendale sophomore Kristin Bighorn serves the ball during her doubles match against the Cle Elum Warriors last Thursday in Goldendale. She teamed with senior Kylee Beam to win in straight sets int he first match of the season.

Goldendale head tennis coach Channon Bighorn said the girls tennis team is striving for a South Central Athletic Conference West district title this season, and the team has started out strong in the right direction.

During the season opening match last Thursday at home against the Cle Elum Warriors, the girls took four of five varsity matches and followed up the tough play with a sweep of the Wahluke Warriors on Saturday.

However, the girls have one of their toughest tests this season coming up as the team travels to La Salle on Thursday for a match with the always tough Lightning.

La Salle has sent at least one doubles team to the state tournament every year since 2011 along with many singles players, and Bighorn expects them to again be tough as always.

The match is set for Thursday at 3:30 p.m. in La Salle, and is the team's only match this week.

Saturday

The Wolves were at home Saturday morning for a nonconference match against the SCAC East's Wahluke, where the girls had little trouble in a 5-0 win while the boys fell 2-1 in a match where neither team was able to get a No. 2 and No. 3 doubles teams.

Nobody lost a set for the girls, which was highlighted by 6-0, 6-0 wins from No. 1 doubles, No. 2 doubles, and No. 2 singles player Alyssa Simmons.

Junior Kelli Bighorn was playing in her first match of the season after missing last Thursday's with an illness, but returned to No. 1 doubles along with Talia Johnson to win in straight sets over Maria Vivar and Michelle Meza without losing a point.

No. 2 doubles of Kylee Beam and Kristin Bighorn also didn't surrender a point while winning in straight sets over Jacqueline Barbosa and Gabriela Meza and No. 3 doubles of Tayler Wells and Ashley Bartkowski cruised to a 6-1, 6-0 victory against Janet Nunez and Emily Garibay.

Singles went pretty much the same way for the girls, with No. 1 Halie Allen winning 6-3, 6-2 over Diana Gonzalez and Simmons (No. 2) winning 6-0, 6-0.

There were only a pair of boys matches played with both singles matches going to the Warriors and the Timberwolves picking up a win by forfeit in the No. 1 doubles contest.

Alden Bothamley, at first singles, fell 4-6, 2-6 to Leuri Sandoval and second singles Cody Farmer dropping the match 3-6, 1-6 to Miguel Urrutia.

Goldendale's top doubles team that day of Hayden Lorton and William Finn didn't have an opponent to play, and picked up the win by forfeit. Neither team on Saturday had a second and third doubles team, giving the Wahluke boys the 2-1 win.

Last Thursday

The Goldendale girls took four out of five games from the Warriors, including dominant doubles performances from all three of Goldendale's pairs.

Even though Kelli Bighorn, who played on last year's No. 1 doubles team that reached state, wasn't playing with an illness on Thursday, all three Goldendale doubles teams combined to drop just two points over the three matches.

No. 1 doubles of Kristin Bighorn and Beam had little trouble in their game against Madelyn McBride and Emma Fedina, winning in straight sets without losing a point.

Johnson, last year's other state competitor, paired with Wells on Thursday on the No. 2 doubles squad, also winning in two straight sets without losing a point as they knocked off Christianna Black and Brook Wolf.

Kinley Mitchell and Bartkowski, playing No. 3 doubles, completed the sweep for the Goldendale doubles groups with a straight-sets win (6-0, 6-2) over Peyton Ryan and Haley Molando.

Playing in the No. 1 singles spot, Allen played a pair of closely contested sets with Cle Elum's Marissa Wolf, but couldn't hang on in a 4-6, 3-6 defeat. Simmons started off the season strong with a 6-0, 6-0 win in the No. 2 singles matchup against India Briggs.

Jaryd Cline

Alden Bothamley returns the ball during last Thursday's doubles match against Cle Elum. Bothamley and John Hanna are the team's No. 1 doubles squad.

The boys also were able to pick up the team win against the Warriors, although the three wins the Timberwolves recorded were via forfeit.

The Warriors had just one boys doubles and singles team, winning both matches, but as a team Goldendale came away as winners with the 3-2 advantage due to the forfeits.

No. 1 singles Avery Christensen couldn't hang on against Dominik Bennett, falling 3-6, 2-6, while Farmer won his No. 2 singles match by forfeit.

Cle Elum was able to field only one doubles team, Zach Bronkhorst and Karver Dewitt, and they were able to knock off John Hanna and Bothamley 4-6, 1-6.

No. 2 doubles (Lorton and Finn) and No. 3 doubles (Mark Blunt and Reis Long) both won by forfeit.

 

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