CENTENNIAL | Playing the Eaglecrest Invitational five weeks later than it was originally scheduled, the Grandview girls tennis team may just be finding its best tennis at the right time.
With just a few dual matches remaining before Class 5A state-qualifying regional tournaments — the Wolves will play in powerhouse Cherry Creek’s regional — coach Jeff Ryan’s team dominated from top to bottom in the rescheduled tournament hosted by the Raptors Friday.
Originally scheduled for March 22-23, when Grandview players were just getting settled into new positions might not have had a lot of benefit, but the delayed tournament proved to be a great confidence booster at this point of the season for the Wolves.
Grandview made the championship match at all three singles and all four doubles positions and won six of those titles on its way to winning the tournament team title by 24 points over runner-up Arvada West. Smoky Hill, Eaglecrest and Rangeview finished within four points of each other and took fifth through seventh.
Sophomore Taylee Hardin (No. 1) and Amanda Olsen-Dufour (No. 2) grabbed singles crowns for Grandview, while the No. 1 tandem of seniors Anna Bratlee and Marisa Welsh, the No. 2 duo of senior Olivia Brohl and junior Ila Farhang, the No. 3 team of juniors Yehna Benduland Rachel Cullop and the No. 4 pairing of senior Rachael Rupprecht and freshman Eleana Welsh all took doubles titles.
Freshman Juniel Figures, a junior varsity player, filled in at No. 3 singles for the tournament for senior Emma Olsen-Dufour and made it to the final as well before losing in two tight sets.
All of Grandview’s champions won their matches in straight sets and Bratlee and Welsh — in their third season together — were the most efficient, as they dropped just one game to their opponents from Arvada West.
Brohl and Farhang, who made last season’s 5A girls state tennis tournament along with Hardin and Olsen-Dufour, staved off an early challenge from Lutheran before winning the second set in shutout fashion.
Smoky Hill had no finalists, but still managed to pick up 17 points as Destinie Hudson led the way with her third-place finish at No. 2 singles.
Eaglecrest garnered 14 points with the top result coming from junior Taylor O’Brien, who made the championship match at No. 2 singles where she fell to Olsen-Dufour 6-2, 6-3.
Rangeview played without three regular players in the tournament — all in the doubles ranks — so coach Chad Forde pushed each team up a spot and filled in with a junior varsity player.
Two Raiders doubles teams — Sarah Bates and Dakota Weir at No. 1 and Cheyanne Boe and Victoria Pasillas at No. 3 — won third-place matches.
Courtney Oakes is Aurora Sentinel Sports Editor. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @aurorasports. FB: Aurora Prep Sentinel
2016 EAGLECREST INVITATIONAL GIRLS TENNIS
April 22 at Eaglecrest High School
Team scores: 1. GRANDVIEW 47 points; 2. Arvada West 23; 3. Parker Lutheran 22; 4. Denver South 18; 5. SMOKY HILL 17; 6. EAGLECREST 14; 7. RANGEVIEW 13
No. 1 singles — Taylee Hardin (Grandview) def. Denver South, 6-3, 6-2; No. 2 singles — Amanda Olsen-Dufour (Grandview) def. Taylor O’Brien (Eaglecrest), 6-2, 6-4; No. 3 singles — Arvada West def. Juniel Figures (Grandview), 7-5, 6-3; No. 1 doubles — Anna Bratlee/Marisa Welsh (Grandview) def. Arvada West, 6-1, 6-0; No. 2 doubles — Ila Farhang/Olivia Brohl (Grandview) def. Parker Lutheran, 7-5, 6-0; No. 3 doubles — Yehna Bendul/Rachel Cullop (Grandview) def. Parker Lutheran, 6-2, 6-3; No. 4 doubles — Rachael Rupprecht/Eleana Welsh (Grandview) def. Parker Lutheran, 6-0, 6-2
No. 1 singles — Parker Lutheran def. Tiana Poole (Smoky Hill), 6-2, 6-1; No. 2 singles — Destinie Hudson (Smoky Hill) def. Denver South, 7-5, 6-3; No. 3 singles — Denver South def. Kaitlin Marler (Eaglecrest), 6-4, 6-1; No. 1 doubles — Sarah Bates/Dakota Weir (Rangeview) def. Denver South, 5-7, 6-2, 10-4; No. 2 doubles — Arvada West def. Zuliema Galvaz/Caitlin Dinges (Smoky Hill), 6-4, 6-0; No. 3 doubles — Cheyanne Boe/Victoria Pasillas (Rangeview) def. Macaila Augustus/Brittney Kruse (Eaglecrest) 6-2, 5-7, 10-4; No. 4 doubles — Arvada West def. Wengel Tadesse/Jena Staverosky (Smoky Hill), 6-2, 6-0
No. 1 singles — Delaney Brink (Eaglecrest) def. Arvada West, 6-3, 6-3; No. 2 singles — Parker Lutheran def. Elena Dedi (Rangeview), 6-4, 6-3; No. 3 singles — Sarah Altshuler (Smoky Hill) def. Harlee Smith (Rangeview), 7-5, 1-6, 12-10; No. 1 doubles — Grace Na/Cassidy Basham (Smoky Hill) def. Parker Lutheran, 7-5, 6-3; No. 2 doubles — Denver South def. Lindsey Duran/Markayla Canty (Rangeview), 6-4, 6-4; No. 3 doubles — Arvada West def. Denver South, 6-0, 6-1; No. 4 doubles — Chloe Hobson/Grace Chew (Rangeview) def. Hannah Moore/Abigail Fennell (Eaglecrest), 6-4, 6-2