Four Chugiak tennis players place at state tournament

Wednesday, October 24, 2018 - 09:56
  • Emilee Groth, of Chugiak High, returns the ball against Erica Hurtte, of Juneau-Douglas High, during the first day of the Alaska high school state tennis tournament at the Alaska Club in Anchorage, AK on Friday, Oct 5, 2018. (Bob Hallinen / ADN)

Chugiak seniors Jared Elison and Claire Mahoney netted a third-place finish in mixed doubles competition Saturday at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska Tennis State Championships at the Alaska Club East in Anchorage.

Elison and Mahoney advanced to the tournament semifinals with wins over West Valley’s Aidan Payan and Morgan Ely in the first round and Hutchison’s Isaiah Moore and Sophia Squires in the second. The Chugiak duo was bounced from the winner’s bracket by top-seeded Kristina Yu and Andre Lief of West in the semis Friday before rallying for a 7-5, 6-4 win over Crawford and Renfro in the third/fifth place match Saturday morning. Yu and Lief went on to win the title.

Mustangs junior Riley Fugere rallied from a first-round upset loss to claim fourth place in boys singles. The bracket’s No. 2 seed lost a tough three-set match to West’s Robbie Sedwick on Friday, but recovered for back-to-back wins over West’s Ethan Pickett and Lathrop’s Riley Knott Saturday.

Emilee Groth placed fifth for Chugiak. Groth opened the tournament with a 6-2, 6-0 win over West’s Sophia Green before losing 6-3, 6-1 to Juneau’s Erica Hurtte in the semifinals. Groth then fell to Service’s Bella Pertlow 6-3, 7-6 in the third/fifth place match Saturday. The showing was the second straight state placement for the Chugiak junior, who was fourth last season.

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Hemry wins fourth straight title

South’s Christine Hemry completed her quest for a fourth straight girls singles title with a 6-1, 6-1 victory over Juneau’s Erica Hurtte Saturday at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska Tennis State Championships at the Alaska Club East.

The win was the third straight finals victory over Hurtte for Hemry, who also beat the Juneau senior 6-1, 6-1 in last year’s title match.

The top seeds won all five finals matches Saturday.

Dimond twins Kate and Layna Debenham won their second straight girls doubles title, knocking off West’s Aileen Kim and Athena Clendaniel 6-1, 6-3.

The most contested finals match Saturday was between top seed David Columbus of East and unseeded Robbie Sedwick of West. Sedwick won the first set 6-1 before Columbus stormed back for a 6-4 win in the second set and a 6-0 win in the third to win his first state title.

In mixed doubles, top-seeded juniors Yu and Lief won their first state title with a 6-3, 6-1 win over No. 2 seed Payton and Walker Brown of South.

In boys doubles, West senior Teddy Bahr teamed with freshman Charlie Rush to win 6-1, 6-2 over South’s Steve Kilkenny and Gage Webster.

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