Six varsity tennis players headed to state tournament
by Robin Willscheidt
Contributing Writer
May 08, 2014 | 896 views | 0 0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Tommy DeWitt of Grand returns a serve during the 2A Southern Divisional meet held in Moab on May 2. Photo by Jeff Richards
Tommy DeWitt of Grand returns a serve during the 2A Southern Divisional meet held in Moab on May 2. Photo by Jeff Richards
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After strong play in the 2014 Region 15 tournament hosted in Moab last week, the Grand County High School boy’s tennis team will bring six of their seven varsity players to the 2A State tournament in Liberty Park in Salt Lake City on Saturday, May 10.

Six of Grand’s players, two doubles and two singles teams, placed within the top five competitors at the Region 15 competition and qualified for the state tournament. GCHS junior Elijah Stock placed second in the No. 1 singles position at the tournament after a tough finals match against Wasatch Academy’s undefeated player. Stock won his first match of the region tournament on Thursday, May 1 against Delta in two sets, 6-0, 6-1. His second match, the semi-final of the region competition, was played on Friday, May 2. Stock won his first set 6-3 against Manti and played well during a tough second set, which he won 7-6 with a tiebreak score of 7-4. Stock went on to the finals match of the competition against Wasatch Academy, where he lost 6-2, 6-4. Stock, the second seed going into the tournament, carried the Red Devils as their highest points scorer of the competition.

Junior Alec Tatton, playing No. 2 singles for the Red Devils, placed fourth in his bracket. Tatton championed his first contest against Delta with two matching set scores of 6-1, and later lost to San Juan 6-2, 6-3. The loss put Tatton in a position to play Wasatch Academy for fourth place. Tatton won 6-2, 6-3, earning him the fourth-place finish in the tournament and a ticket to the state competition.

Doubles teams Mack Sherrill and Josh Lawley and Derek Johnson and Dallin Porter placed fifth and fourth in the tournament, respectively. After a three-set loss to Wasatch Academy in their first round of competition, Sherrill and Lawley returned to beat both South Sevier (6-0, 6-3) and Gunnison (2-6, 6-2, 6-3) for a chance to play for fourth place. The No. 1 team ultimately lost to San Juan in the final round in three sets for a fifh-place finish at the tournament.

Lawley and Johnson, playing No. 2 doubles, won their first match against Gunnison 6-2 7-5 and went on to play San Juan. After losing to San Juan, the team had a rematch against Gunnison for fourth place, winning that final match 6-0, 6-0.

Sophomore Tommy DeWitt lost his first two rounds of the tournament and will not continue on to the state tournament.

“For a young team, we did very well,” said head coach Ed DeFrancia. “The boys were playing against seniors from amazing schools. The weather was great and the tournament ran very smoothly. We’re thankful for that.”

The Red Devils’ goal for the tournament, said DeFrancia, was to qualify all varsity players for the state tournament.

“We did well. It was a good season,” he said.

Grand will play in the 2A state tennis tournament in Salt Lake City on Saturday, May 10 for a chance at a state title.

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