Hillsboro singles tennis player Allison Weber qualified for the Class 3-2-1A state tennis tournament for the third consecutive year Saturday in Leavenworth after a second-place finish at regionals.
“Allison basically did what she typically does, outlasts and frustrates her opponent by taking her best punches and returning everything,” coach Bob Woelk said.
Weber defeated Asbell Blythe of Maranatha Academy 6-1 and 6-0 and Alexa Menold of Sabetha 6-0 and 6-1. After winning 6-2 and 6-3 against Megan Bowlin of Maranatha in the semifinals, Weber was shut out by Sara Goodwin of Kansas City Christian. Goodwin is the reigning state champion from 2012.
Weber trailed Bowlin 3-2 during their second set before winning four games in a row to move to the finals.
“Overall, Allison played really well,” Woelk said. “She controlled the tempo of most of her matches and made the big shots when she had to.”
Claire Heyen, who entered the tournament as the 12th seed, came one match short of state qualification, losing to Rachel Freese of Marysville, 6-1 and 6-0.
After winning a play-in match against Wabaunsee’s Delaney Reves, Heyen upset fifth-seeded Jamie Clary of Hiawatha 2-6, 6-2, and 10-3. Heyen lost 6-0 twice to Lexi Wenger of Sabetha, which led to her loss to Freese in the first round of the consolation bracket
“I was especially proud of the way Claire came on late in the season as our second singles player,” Woelk said. “She should be an even bigger threat next year.”
Allison Gray and Hannah Funk lost their first doubles matchup with third-seeded Jenny Jenkins and Brooke Robertson of KC Christian, and Destiny Sharp and Anna Glanzer lost a play-in match against Lydia Lierz and Cori Herrera of Hiawatha.
“These girls should make a much-improved team for next year as they gained valuable experience late in the season,” Woelk said.
Weber will compete in the state tournament beginning Friday at the Walter Blake Complex in Pratt.