Hays High tennis enjoys big numbers

Rick Peterson Jr.
Hays High's Morgan Shorb won first place at No. 2 singles in the HHS Invitational on Thursday.

Hays High coach Kayla Brown was caught by surprise when a total of 40 girls came out for the HHS tennis team.

Knowing high schoolers are looking for new opportunities to keep active amid the pandemic, Brown wasn’t about to turn anyone away.

“I was absolutely in shock that we had that many show up,” Brown said. “But the kids were tired of being home, they needed something to do. Tennis, I guess, is as safe as you can get. So I said, ‘Let’s try and make it work. I don’t want to cut ya.’

“They’ve been super awesome about making it work and competing when they get the chance. I think long as we make it to the end of the season, they’ll get to see a decent amount of time on the court for the numbers we have.”

Hays High hosted its home meet on Thursday at the city tennis courts and Hays High. It was an entirely different team of players than from last week’s season-opening meet at Cimarron.

Morgan Shorb won No. 2 singles with a 4-0 record, while Caroline Robben and Sage Zweifel won first place at No. 2 doubles, going 4-0 in their matches.

Brown was pleased with her team’s showing.

“I thought they, overall, played very well. We had lots of wins,” Brown said. “… I hadn’t seen any of them compete on this season.

“The doubles teams seemed to work together really well; they hadn’t played together at all last year. I think both our singles players competed well for not having varsity experience.

“I think we have a very strong team of varsity, now that we’ve seen them all compete.”

Scott City won the team title, accumulating 28 points while Hays High had 25. Norton took third, while Victoria was fourth and Goodland fifth.

“I think this a competitive tournament for us, for our level, with the schools that come,” Brown said. “I think we had a lot of close matches. This is a good one for them to feel like, ‘Alright, we can do this, we have the capability,’ — before maybe we match up against some of our league schools or larger 5As that are more competitive.”

Twelve different players have played varsity for the Indians so far. Shorb, Caroline Robben, Zweifel, Maggie Robben, Taylor Deines and McKena McBride played Thursday. Last week against Cimarron, Alexis White, Jamie Haddaway, Mylah Potter, Britnee Leiker, Danica Scheve and Kayler Wellbrock played.

“I had a lot (of players) come back with the skills that they ended the season with last year, so I’m hoping they continue to improve,” Brown said. “We maybe struggled against more competitive teams last year, but I think we have some teams that will be able to match up really well this year.

“Then that lower end of girls that have come out for the first time and are just learning, hopefully we can get them some JV wins by the end of the season as well.”

Victoria’s Brooklynn Kuhn won No. 1 singles with a 4-0 record. Scott City’s Isabella Gutierrez-Myers and Mallorie Cupp won No. 1 doubles, going 4-0.

Hays High will play at the Great Bend Invitational on Tuesday.

Hays High Invitational Results

No. 1 singles

Garza, Goodland, def. Robben, Hays, 6-0; Yeager, Norton, def. Westergard, Scott City, 6-0; Kuhn, Victoria, def. Garza, Goodland, 6-0; Yeager, Norton, def. Robben, Hays, 6-1; Westergard, Scott City, def. Robben, Hays, 6-3; Kuhn, Victoria, def. Yeager, Norton, 6-1; Yeager, Norton, def. Garza, Goodland, 6-0; Kuhn, Victoria, def. Robben, Hays, 6-2; Westergard, Scott CIty, def. Garza, Goodland, 6-0. Kuhn, Vitoria, def. Robben, Hays, 6-1.

No. 2 singles

Sweat, Victoria, def. Herrera, Goodland, 6-3; Shorb, Hays, def. Hawks, Norton, 6-4; Mur, Scott City, def. Herrera, Goodland, 6-1; Shorb, Hays, def. Sweat Victoria, 6-4; Shorb, Hays, def. Hawks, Norton, 6-0; Hawks, Norton, def. Sweat, Victoria, 6-1; Hawks, Norton, def. Herrera, 6-0; Sweat, Victoria, def. Mur, Scott City, 6-0; Shorb def. Herrera, Goodland, 6-0; Mur, Scott City, def. Hawks, Norton, 6-5 (7-3).

No. 1 doubles

Deines/McBride, Hays, def. Kent/Cole, Goodland, 6-2; Gutierrez-Myers/Cupp, Scott City, def. Basgall/David, Norton, 6-3; Wellbrock/Hammerschmidt, Victoria, def. Kent/Cole, Goodland, 6-3; Deines/McBride def. Basgall/David, Norton, 6-4; Gutierrez-Myers/Cupp, Scott City, Deines/MCBride, Hays, 6-1; Basgall/David, Norton, def. Wellbrock/Hammerschmidt, 6-3; Basgall/David, Norton, def. Kent/Cole, Goodland, 6-3; Gutierrez-Myers/Cupp, Scott City, def. Wellbrock/Hammerschmidt, 6-4; Guttierrez-Myers/Cupp, Scott City, def. Kent/Cole, Goodland, 6-0; Wellbrock/Hammerschmidt, def. Deines/McBride, 6-3.

No. 2 doubles

Amthor/Knitig, Goodland, def. VonLintel/Peterson, Victoria, 6-5 (8-6); Robben/Zweifel def. Amthor/Knitig, Goodland, 6-1; Burnett/Stoppel, Scott City, def. Amthor/Knitig, Goodland, 6-0; Robben/Zweifel, Hays, def. VonLintel/Peterson, Victoria, 6-0; Robben/Zweifel, Hays, def. Burnett/Stoppel, Scott City, 6-0; Izarelli/Stewart, Norton, def. VonLintel/Peterson, Victoria, 6-1; Izarelli/Stewart, Norton, def. Amthor/Knitig, Goodland, 6-2; Burnett/Stoppel, Scott City, def. VonLintel/Peterson, Victoria, 6-4; Robben/Zweifel, Hays, def. Amthor/Knitig, Goodland, 6-0; Burnett/Stoppel, Scott City, def. Izarelli/Stewart, Norton, 6-4.

Hays High's Caroline Robben and Sage Zweifel took first at No. 2 doubles in the HHS Invitational.