Jamey Swiggart dominates Montana State Junior Open tennis

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— Rising Steamboat Springs High School sophomore Jamey Swiggart admits he was a little overwhelmed playing No. 1 singles as a freshman on the tennis team.

But with a year of experience and a summer chockfull of tournaments, Jamey now is in a prime position to become one of the top players in Class 4A.

"I'd like to win (state)," Jamey said. "It would be nice. I think I have a chance if I get past the first couple of rounds."

Judging by his summer results, Jamey has an opportunity this fall.

The 15-year-old won the boys 16- and 18-year-old division at the Colorado State Junior Open in June. More recently, Jamey won the 16-year-old division at the Montana State Junior Open in Bozeman and finished fifth in the 18-year-old division.

The July 30 through Aug. 2 tournament featured top players from all across the region. In the 16-year-old division, Jamey didn't lose a single set on his way to the championship. All told, Jamey won 10 of his 11 matches in Montana.

"Going into it, I was a little bit nervous," Jamey said. "But I'm never really that nervous. I guess as a No. 1 seed, you're supposed to win. I felt pretty good about it."

In both tournaments, Jamey saw several top players from Colorado whom he'll likely see during the upcoming fall season.

Swiggart said seeing his competitors and playing in high-level tournaments boost his confidence. Swiggart said with the year of experience at the high school level and the natural progression of his game, he feels good heading into the upcoming season.

"I really think he can be in the top five (at state)," Steamboat tennis coach John Aragon said. "Even though he's a sophomore playing against juniors and seniors, he's hitting the ball well enough to be a top-five placer."

The high school boys tennis team starts practice Aug. 17.

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