Archive for Thursday, September 21, 2006

LHS tennis places fourth at Hayden Tourney

September 21, 2006

The Lansing High girls tennis team continues to turn in strong performances against stiff competition.

First the Lions opened the season by placing everyone in the top four Sept. 12 at the Trailblazer Invitational in Gardner. Then they held their own against tougher opponents at the Baldwin Invitational on Sept. 13.

The latest test came Saturday at the Hayden Invitational in Topeka. Lansing again was up to the task.

Despite some roster juggling and a few players sidelined by illness, the Lions placed fourth in the eight-team field. Perennial Class 4A power Hayden cruised to the team title with 50 points. Wamego was second with 32, followed by Sabetha (22) and LHS (20).

"We took a pretty young team to Topeka, and the girls performed very well," LHS coach Rachel Elkins said. Elkins noted that senior Abby Hauver and junior Sarah Sargent missed the tournament because of the flu. Freshman Ashley Harrington also was out with a wrist injury.

Senior Heidi Schultz continued her steady play at No. 1 singles and placed third. She dropped a close match in the semifinals before rolling to an 8-3 victory in the consolation match.

"Heidi probably should have been playing in the championship bracket," Elkins said. "She lost a tight one to the girl from Wamego that she beat last year."

Sophomore Lauren Elkins, a doubles player up to this point in the season, made the switch to No. 2 singles.

"She had a lot of close matches," coach Elkins said. "A lot of her points went to long rallies, and she just didn't win those points. Overall she played some good tennis and a lot of coaches talked about her ground strokes."

The surprise of the tournament may have come at No. 1 doubles where junior Christine Cordes and freshman Amy Briggs marched to the finals before losing in a tiebreaker, 8-7. Briggs had played singles prior to Saturday's tournament. Cordes moved up from No. 2 doubles.

Based on their performance at Hayden, Elkins said she plans to keep Cordes and Briggs together the rest of the season.

"Chrissy's been playing some good doubles, and Amy can pretty much run down anything and place the ball," Elkins said. "Placing the ball in doubles is pertinent. You've got to do it. It's a good match."

Freshmen Ariana Domke and Briana Hall competed at No. 2 doubles. They didn't place.

Lansing returns to the court at 8:30 a.m. Saturday at De Soto.

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