Truckee tennis: Wolverines represent in state championships
The Truckee boys tennis team achieved its season-long goal of returning to the Division I-A state championship in Las Vegas for a fourth consecutive year. The Wolverines represented the Northern Region as the No. 1 seed in the team competition, and sent two singles and two doubles players to the individual competition.
Truckee battled The Meadows, the No. 2 seed from the South, for the third time in four years. Although the Wolverines played with all the heart of champions, they fell 4-2 in a tiebreaker after playing to a 9-9 tie in regulation.
The Meadows jumped out to an early lead in almost all of the six matches, but Truckee settled down and gained control of five of them.
Zach Yamauchi lost the first match 4-6, while Truckee recorded the next four points. Zach Haas won the No. 1 singles match, 6-4. Kevin Cross and Colin Deurlington won 6-4 over the No. 1 doubles, Jack Feick and Noah Warren battled to a 6-4 win against the No. 2 doubles,and Quincy Schram and Zach Larson outlasted the No. 3 doubles in a tiebreaker, 7-6 (7-3).
The most important match of the first round involved Ethan Gotts against the No. 3 singles. Carrying a “break” deep into the match, Gotts had a chance to put the match away, but could not hold on in a 5-7 loss.
Second-round action included more great play on both sides. Truckee’s singles took care of business with Hass and Gotts winning 6-0, 6-3, respectively. Turner Drummond was given an impossible task against the No. 1, losing 0-6. On the doubles side, The Meadows stepped forced a tiebreak before Cross/Deurlington prevailed 7-6 (7-2).
Truckee’s other doubles did not fare as well, losing 3-6, 2-6.
After two rounds, Truckee led 7-5, but The Meadows was gaining momentum. The Meadows held the advantage in the third round. Truckee’s No. 1 players continued their dominance, winning 6-0, 6-2. The others players tried to regain the confidence they showed earlier but were no match for the surging Mustangs, who carried their momentum into the overtime tiebreak.
In the state individual competition, the format was changed to a best two out of three sets. In the quarterfinals, Haas won 6-3, 6-2 and Cross/Deurlington won 6-1, 6-0. Also competing were Gotts and Feick/Warren, both facing tough competition before falling 3-6, 1-6 and 1-6, 0-6, respectively.
Haas won again in the semis, 7-5, 6-1, to become the first Truckee player ever to compete in the state individual finals. Cross/Deurlington lost 2-6, 0-6 to a tough Clark team.
Despite a full arsenal of shots, Haas lost 2-6, 2-6 in the finals.
In the doubles consolation match, Truckee faced South Tahoe in a rematch of the Northern Region finals. Before a cheering crowd, the Wolverines got the better of the Vikings, 7-5, 4-6, 6-4.
Mason Wittels, meanwhile, represented North Tahoe as a No. 3 singles seed in the individual competition. He was pitted against the South’s No. 2 single in the quarters. Showing the growth of the Lakers program, Wittels battled hard but could not keep pace in a 2-6, 3-6 loss.
The Truckee girls achieved their strongest finish in team history, winning the regional team title to earn the North’s No. 1 seed at state.
The Wolverines ran into a tough Faith Lutheran team in the semifinals and lost 5-13.
The Wolverines were led by captains Aimee Lagrandeur and Laney Rohlf, with a notable performance by Annie Guerra, who stepped out of her comfort zone from doubles to play singles and won both matches she played.
Guerra and her partner Maya Willis, along with Rohlf and Devyn Hogan, went on to represent Truckee in the state individual tournament for doubles.
Although the girls did not advance to the second day of the tournament, both matches were competitive with a high-energy crowd.
Guerra and Willis stretched their match to an exciting three sets.
Every one of Truckee’s 14 team members saw playing time with the exception of Anna Keith, who was forced to the sideline with an injury.
The team will return Becky Ziegler, Meghan Stokes, Guerra, Willis, Emmy Downing and Kylie Greeno next season, while Lagrandeur, Rohlf, Keith, Riley Pruyn, Lexie Gross, Hogan, Margarita Ziegler and Hannah Hamilton will be lost to graduation.