Lady Panthers Walck the Wright direction
Emily Walck and Mary Wright just keep winning on the tennis court.
After winning their match against Cedaredge on Thursday, 6-0, 6-1, the Lady Panthers No. 1 doubles team finished first-place at the Delta County Invitational Tournament last Saturday.
Thirteen teams from both 4A and 5A schools participated in the popular tourney. Montezuma-Cortez High School took second overall behind fellow 4A school Glenwood Springs.
On Friday morning, Walck and Wright beat Hotchkiss 8-1 and beat Glenwood Springs 8-4 in the afternoon to qualify for the finals against Montrose Saturday morning.
Walck and Wright won the first set against strong play by Montrose and that led to much more confidence in the minds of the Lady Panthers duo. That gained confidence led to their opponents losing accuracy and strength, according to M-CHS coach Dan Wood.
After receiving their first-place medals in the closing ceremonies, Walck and Wright were voted "Best Doubles Team" in the county. They were given plaques to honor their outstanding play and sportsmanship.
Walck and Wright have now won 11 matches in a row and remain undefeated.
The Lady Panthers also had strong singles performances. Sadee Threlkeld reached the finals by winning matches over Cedaredge (8-3) and Fruita Monument (8-4). Threlkeld then lost to a very strong No. 2 Vail Mountain opponent in the finals.
Sophomore Nicole Demby also reached the finals on Saturday with victories over Delta, 8-3; and, Glenwood Springs, 8-4. Demby had a tough finals opponent from Grand Junction Central at No. 3 singles and lost the first set tiebreaker, 5-7, and the second set, 4-6.
Freshmen Skye Cole and Racquel Lucero placed third in the tourney by beating Cedaredge 7-7 (7-5) in the first round at No. 4 doubles. They lost a very close contest to Montrose in the semifinals, 6-8. They came on strong to beat Roaring Fork 6-2 and 6-4 to take bronze medals.
Tara Abrams was pushed into the No. 1 singles spot because Kristin Parker was out with an illness. Abrams played strong tennis against the best players in the tourney and lost to Montrose and Central High.
The No. 2 doubles team of Jessica Quinonez and Jaci Veach beat Cedaredge 7-7 (10-8) in the first round and then lost to Hotchkiss. In the consolation round, the Lady Panthers duo beat Vail Mountain, Delta and Montrose to take fifth.
Tori Calliham and Kearra Boggs lost to Glenwood Springs in the first round 3-8 and then had victories over Vail Mountain and Hotchkiss at No. 3 doubles. They lost a tough match in the consolation finals to Central 7-7 (4-7).
The Lady Panthers' second-place finish is the highest in school history at this very competitive tourney.
M-CHS hosts Fruita and Grand Junction on April 26-27, at the Jim Harkendorff Tennis Courts.
Photo courtesy of Dan Wood