DENVER | Sunny skies allowed the Class 5A girls state tennis tournament to get back on track Friday morning at Gates Tennis Center.
Regis Jesuit scored the first three points of its debut at the Class 5A state tournament when senior Shelby Cerkovnik posted a first round victory at No. 1 singles, sophomore Haley Chirico followed suit at No. 2 singles and the No. 2 doubles team of Catherine Nemechek and Jessica Butler — playing at an alternate site, Denver South High School — also prevailed in a three-setter.
Cerkovnik won the first set against Heritage’s Kaitlin Bos before play was scuttled by intermittent rain showers Thursday and quickly finished off a 6-0, 6-1 victory when play resumed. She ran into one the tournament’s dynamic freshmen — Arapahoe’s Tate Schroeder, who could meet another frosh, Loveland’s Becca Weissmann in the final — in the quarterfinals.
Schroeder, who rolled past 2012 state champion Kelli Woodman of Cherry Creek in straight sets in the opening round, won a 6-3, 6-2 slugfest from Cerkovnik, who said Schroeder had vastly improved from the time they’d played each other last summer.
A Schroeder win over Pine Creek’s Nicole Kalhorn in a semifinal Friday afternoon would bring Cerkovnik — who plans on at Montana State next year — into the playback bracket.
Chirico, who placed third at No. 2 singles at the 4A state tournament, also won a resumed match in the first round as she downed Legend’s Alexandra Sheppard 6-2, 6-3.
Temperamental Fairview freshman Natalie Munson won a 6-3, 6-4 quarterfinal against Chirico, who needed Munson to beat Fossil Ridge’s Kaitlyn Motley in the quarterfinals to get a playback chance.
Cherokee Trail senior Sydney Reese dropped her No. 3 singles opener to Ralston Valley’s Megan Wewel, who capitalized on her mistakes for a 6-3, 6-2 victory.
Reese, who also lost in the first round playing at state in doubles last season, needed Wewel to win two matches to get a playback.
Reach Sports Editor Courtney Oakes at [email protected] or 303-750-7555
2013 CLASS 5A GIRLS STATE TENNIS TOURNAMENT
Aurora quarterfinal matches
No. 1 singles: Tate Schroeder (Arapahoe) def. Shelby Cerkovnik (Regis Jesuit), 6-3, 6-2
No. 2 singles: Natalie Munson (Fairview) def. Haley Chirico (Regis Jesuit), 6-3, 6-4
No. 2 doubles: Catherine Nemechek/Jessica Butler (Regis Jesuit) vs. Nicole Newell/Lauren Rhoda (Fossil Ridge), in progress
Aurora first round matches
No. 1 singles: Shelby Cerkovnik (Regis Jesuit) def. Kaitlin Bos (Heritage), 6-0, 6-1 (resumed match)
No. 2 singles: Haley Chirico (Regis Jesuit) def. Alexandra Sheppard (Legend), 6-2, 6-3
No. 3 singles: Megan Wewel (Ralston Valley) def. Sydney Reese (Cherokee Trail), 6-3, 6-2
No. 1 doubles: Sasha Harrison/Schaefer Kowalchik (Lakewood) def. Erica Dodson/Anna Finch (Regis Jesuit), 6-3, 6-2
No. 2 doubles: Catherine Nemechek/Jessica Butler (Regis Jesuit) def. Jenny Madsen/Shaylie Margrave (Legacy), 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-3