St. Thomas More and Rapid City Christian wrapped up the season-opening Rapid City Invitational girls tennis meet with two combined dual wins and unblemished records after the second day of play at the Sioux Park and Parkview Tennis Complex.
Among area teams, both the Cavaliers and Comets finished the weekend with 3-0 win-loss records. Rapid City Stevens went 1-1, while Rapid City Central and Spearfish closed the weekend with 0-3 dual records. Madison finished with a 2-1 record and Aberdeen Central went 1-2.
St. Thomas More coach Keiz Larson was pleased with way her team played in its opening tests of the 2019 season, the first under the new two-class system. Of the 18 singles and nine doubles matches More played, the Cavaliers dropped only three on its way to taking dual wins from three Class AA schools — Aberdeen Central, Rapid City Stevens and Rapid City Central.
“The girls had a great season opener,” Larson said. “With the early start of matches this year, we are still making adjustments to the lineup but hope to have things set by next weekend’s matches in Sioux Falls.”
Rapid City Christian, among the favorites to win state Class A team title this fall, swept through its 27 total matches on the way to beating Class AA Rapid City Central and Class A opponents from Spearfish and Madison.
“I was really looking forward to this weekend for several reasons,” Christian coach Teresa Postma said. “For the girls who have worked hard this offseason, to see the fruit of their pursuit; to see how our new doubles partners were going to work out; and enjoy the camaraderie with the teams we played. I had high expectations in those areas and was not disappointed. We were able to play hard, learn things from other players and enjoy the game with them. It was a bonus we also had some wins.”
Stevens, which played much of the weekend without one of its top players, Abbey Dehler, scratched out a hard-fought 5-4 win over Aberdeen Central on Friday after before falling 7-2 to St. Thomas More in its late match Friday.
“Overall I was pleased with our performance,” Raider coach Jason Olson said. “I think Aberdeen Central and our team are about equal. It was a very good match, and we were happy to get a close win. Against STM, I wish we would’ve competed a little more in doubles, but I think our girls realized they have to be ready to go. St. Thomas More is a good team.”
The three of four Rapid City-based schools have a busy week ahead.
More travels to the Sioux Falls Invitational Friday and Saturday. Christian and Stevens travel to Spearfish for duals on Tuesday, before traveling East River to play. The Comets have a dual with Lennox on Thursday before taking part in the Madison Small School tournament on Friday and Saturday. After the Spearfish dual, Stevens will play in the Brandon Valley Invitational Friday and Saturday.
Rapid City Central is off until Aug. 27, when the Cobblers travel to Mitchell for duals against the Kernels and Vermillion.
St. Thomas More 9, R.C. Central 0
Ainsleigh Scott, STM, def. Harper Keim, RCC, 6-1, 6-4
Bridget Raymond, STM, def. Lindsey Pfingston, RCC, 6-1, 6-0
Vanessa Wittenberg, STM, def. Cordelia Raforth, RCC, 6-1, 6-0
Alastrina Scott, STM, def. Kiana Johnson, RCC, 6-0, 6-0
Megan Achbach, STM, def. Arianna Doty, RCC, 6-1, 6-1
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Katelyn Denholm, STM, def. Mehrezat Abbas, RCC, 6-0, 6-0
Ai. Scott-V. Wittenberg, STM, def. H. Keim-L. Pfingston, RCC, 6-0, 6-0
B. Raymond-Al. Scott, STM, def. C. Raforth-K. Johnson, RCC, 6-0, 6-0
M. Achbach-S. Meyer, STM, def. A. Doty-M. Abbas, RCC, 6-2, 6-2
R.C. Christian 9, Madison 0
Ella Hancock, RCCh, def. CC Graham, Mad., 4-6, 6-4 (10-5)
Bridget Schneller, RCCh, def. Mya Maxwell, Mad., 3-6, 6-4 (11-9)
Julia Anderson, RCCh, def. Lily Wolff, Mad., 6-1, 6-0
Paige Wagner, RCCh, def. Emma Kruger, Mad., 6-4, 6-2
Anna Ligtenberg, RCCh, def. Evelyn Graham, Mad., 6-2, 6-3
Mia Shankle, RCCh, def. Bella Maxwell, Mad., 6-1, 6-1
E. Hancock-P. Wagner, RCCh, def. C. Graham-M. Maxwell, Mad., 6-2, 6-2
J. Anderson-B. Schneller, RCCh, def. L. Wolf-E. Graham, Mad., 6-2, 6-3
M. Shankle-A. Ligtenberg, RCCh, def. E. Kruger-E. Van Liere, Mad., 6-4, 7-5
Results from the Spearfish-Aberdeen Central match were not available at press time