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Competitive week

Polson's tennis team has a successful week, but still trying to smooth out the rough spots

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It wasn't the smoothest of weeks but the Polson tennis team had its moments.

On Friday the Polson girls rolled over Whitefish 7-0, but the Pirate boys came up short in a 4-3 dual loss to the Bulldogs. On Saturday, both Polson teams lost in Hamilton 4-3, then the split in an afternoon match against Corvallis, with the Polson boys getting swept 7-0 and the Polson girls winning 6-1, but not very convincingly. 

"(It was a) rough weekend for the boys but there were some bright spots," Polson head coach Bob Hislop said.

Against Whitefish, Matt Roberts had a solid 6-2, 6-2 win at number one singles, while Christian McCurdy battled back to win 1-6, 6-3, 6-2 at number two singles. Polson's number one doubles team of Shad Giles and Justin Evertz also cruised to a 6-2, 6-4 win at number one doubles. Unfortunately, the scales tipped to Whitefish in the dual when the Bulldogs picked up a three-set win at number three doubles; Polson's Ian Laimbeer and Sam Peel narrowly lost 6-3, 5-7, 6-4.

"Christian McCurdy had a real nice win versus Whitefish after losing the first set," Hislop said. "He played very smart and hit the ball with a lot of consistency."

Against Hamilton, the Pirates fell in the top three singles matches and number two singles. Giles and Evertz looked solid in a 6-3, 6-2 win at number one doubles, while Sam Peel battled back to win a three-setter at number four singles and Laimbeer and Reed Hovenkotter teamed up at number three doubles to win 7-5, 6-1.

"Sam Peel had a very nice win versus Hamilton at number four singles and Ian Laimbeer and Reed Hovenkotter also had a great win," coach Hislop noted.

Later Saturday afternoon, the Polson boys ran into a buzz saw of a team in Corvallis. Not only did the Blue Devils win every match, they didn't give up many games.

However, Polson's Giles and Evertz didn't give up the number one doubles loss easily to Luke Allsop and Dillon Murray. The first set went to a tiebreaker after a 6-6 standoff and the Polson boys narrowly lost 9-7. The second set was almost as tight, with the Corvallis team pulling out a 7-5 win to close the match.

"Shad and Justin played well all weekend at number one doubles. They lost a very competitive match with Corvallis' number one (team) ... one of the best doubles teams in Class A," coach Hislop said. "If Shad and Justin can serve and return serve a little more consistently they will be very competitive at state."

Polson's girls opened the week with a solid 7-0 win at home over Whitefish. The Lady Pirates were dominant in their matches, cruising over a young, rebuilding Lady Bulldog team. 

Erika Nunlist remained undefeated at number two singles in the conference with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Whitefish's Courtney Wilder.

In Hamilton Saturday morning, Polson's girls lost to the Lady Broncs for the second time this season and their only two dual losses. Coach Hislop noted that in both duals Polson was missing a senior.

Polson's girls lost all four singles matches, but won all three doubles matches. Kayla and Kendyall Rochin from a slow start to win 6-7 (3-7), 6-2, 6-0 number one doubles win. Kelsie Howell and Mackenzie Clay teamed up to win 6-4, 7-5 at number two doubles, while Audra Engebretson and Jordan Quinn also battled to a 6-3, 7-6 (7-4) win at number three doubles.

The Lady Pirates mixed up their lineup and still won 6-1 over Corvallis. In the one loss at number two singles, Kendyall Rochin did win a set.

"The girls team got a 6-1 victory over Corvallis on Saturday afternoon but our quality of play was way off," Hislop said. "Maybe it is a midseason slump but we will look at the reasons it may have happened and get it fixed."

Over the three duals there were plenty of highlights and plenty of areas to work on, according to Hislop.

"Jane Probst was beaten very soundly by Mary Conwell of Hamilton.  We will go to work on the things she struggled with and use the match to learn from. Otherwise Jane had a solid weekend," the coach said. "The new doubles team of Kelsie Howell and Mackenzie Clay had a great day Saturday winning two straight set matches, the second one being against the Corvallis number one team."

He said Kendyall and Kayla Rochin played their best match of the year against Whitefish. 

"Kayla and Kendyall are still working on not having the two-to-four-game bad patches in the middle of matches. If that problem is alleviated they will be legitimate state contenders," Hislop commented. "Whitney Zimmerman and Josie Benedetti continue to impress. They improve every time they go on court whether playing singles or doubles. They both lost close singles matches versus veteran players from Hamilton, but played excellent. They also won two matches at number three doubles versus Whitefish and Corvallis."

The Polson tennis team will stay busy on the court this week with a string of duals at home. On Tuesday, Polson hosted the Columbia Falls boys, while the girls' teams will match up in Polson on Friday at 10 a.m. Also on Friday, Polson will host a girls' dual against Dillon at 4 p.m. 

On Saturday, Polson hosts duals at 9 a.m. against Dillon's girls again and the Columbia Falls boys, then a full dual at 3 p.m. against Stevensville.


Whitefish 4, Polson 3

Singles - Matt Roberts, P, def. Jacob Washer, 6-2, 6-2; Christian McCurdy, P, def. Tyler Schiff, 1-6, 6-3, 6-2; Francisco Valle, W, def. Andrew Storro, 6-2, 6-0; Austin Sattler, W, def. Reed Hovenkotter, 6-1, 6-2.

Doubles - Shad Giles/Justin Evertz, P, def. Jake Morrison/Joel Mallums, 6-2, 6-4; Connor Ellis/Joel Bacher, W, def. Hayden Congdon/Will Davey, 6-3, 6-4; Nick Jack/Casey Beiser, W, def. Ian Laimbeer/Sam Peel, 6-3, 5-7, 6-4.


Hamilton 4, Polson 3

Singles - Bob Huppert, H, def. Matt Roberts, 6-4, 6-3; Ethan Selig, H, def. Christian McCurdy, 6-1, 6-0; Cody Tredik, H, def. Andrew Storro, 6-0, 6-1; Sam Peel, P, def. Aaron Mead, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.

Doubles - Shad Giles/Justin Evertz, P, def. Jason Jessop/Parker Richards, 6-3, 6-2; Cody Lewis/ Graham Silcher, H, def. Will Davey/ Hayden Congdon, 6-2, 6-0; Ian Laimbeer/Reed Hovenkotter, P, def. Reese Isherwood/Craig Weese, 7-5, 6-1.


Corvallis 7, Polson 0

Singles - Levi Pauley, C, def. Matt Roberts, 6-1, 6-2; Spencer Fehr, C, def. Christian McCurdy, 6-1, 6-1; David Inginfritz, C, def. Andrew Storro, 6-3, 6-0; Turner Zsupnik, C, def. Hayden Congdon, 6-3, 6-3.

Doubles - Luke Allsop/Dillon Murray, C, def. Shad Giles/Justin Evertz, 7-6 (9-7), 7-5; Mitchell Decker/Bridger Walczynski, C, def. Ian Laimbeer/Will Davey, 6-1, 6-2; Cody Lengyl/Isaac Smith, C, def. Sam Peel/Jacob Browne, 6-0, 6-1.


Polson 7, Whitefish 0

Singles - Jane Probst, P, def. Meridith Reed, 6-0, 6-3; Erika Nunlist, P, def. Courtney Wilder, 6-1, 6-2; Karmen Borchers, P, def. Kendall Sattler, 6-1, 6-0, Mackenzie Clay, P, def. Morgan Danczyk, 6-0, 6-0.

Doubles - Kayla Rochin/Kendyall Rochin, P, def. Anne Miller/Hannah Weaver, 6-0, 6-1; Audra Engebretson/Jordan Quinn, P, def. Bailey Chauner/Alexa Holliday, 6-1, 6-3; Whitney Zimmerman/Josie Benedetti, P, def. Lauren Cain/ Lindsay 

Viscomi, 6-0, 6-0.

Hamilton 4, Polson 3

Singles - Mary Conwell, H, def. Jane Probst, 6-2, 6-2; Kelsey Jura, H, def. Karmen Borchers, 6-1, 6-2; Nellie Moran, H, def. Whitney Zimmerman, 7-5, 6-1; Kelsey Della Silva, H, def. Josie Benedetti, 7-5, 7-5.

Doubles - Kayla Rochin/Kendyall Rochin, P, def. Kim Lamar/Stella Quinlan, 6-7 (3-7), 6-2, 6-0; Kelsie Howell/Mackenzie Clay, P, def. Varsha Rao/Tara Stromberg, 6-4, 7-5; Audra Engebretson/Jordan Quinn, P, def. Erica Huppert/Meg Maclean, 6-3, 7-6 (7-4).


Polson 6, Corvallis 1

Singles - Jane Probst, P, def. Sydnee Madruga, 6-2, 6-3; Tabitha Hooten, C, def. Kendyall Rochin, 2-6, 6-3, 6-3; Kayla Rochin, P, def. Sarah Harnsworth, 6-1, 7-5; Karmen Borchers, P, def. Lexi Sangster, 6-2, 6-1.

Doubles - Kelsie Howell/Mackenzie Clay, P, def. Lauren Phinney/ Brooke Heckeroth, 7-7 (7-4), 6-3; Audra Engebretson/Jordan Quinn, P, def. Hannah Lockhart/Dao Slagter, 2-6, 6-3, 6-3; Whitney Zimmerman/Josie Benedetti, P, def. Kelsey Jessop/Shandra Williams, 6-3, 6-1.

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