Steamboat tennis puts 4 in semifinals

Girls to continue play Saturday at Grand Junction tournament

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— The Steamboat Springs High School girls tennis team advanced two singles players and one doubles team to the semifinals of the Western Slope Open tennis tournament in Grand Junction on Friday.

Steamboat’s No. 2 singles player Christi Valicenti and No. 3 singles player Kylee Swiggart will play in the semifinals today with a chance to make it into the championship match.

The No. 4 doubles team of Sara Hoing and Rachel Grubbs also made it to today’s semifinal round.

The No. 1 doubles team of Sara Bearss and Lauren Siegel won its first match before dropping the second. That team and the No. 2 doubles team of Ali Diehl and Alli Lowrie will play for fifth and sixth place today.

The No. 3 doubles team of Katie Ross and Mandy Thiel­emann made it to the semifinals, before losing. They will play for third and fourth place today.

Kate Cooper, at No. 1 singles, lost her first two matches.

Today’s matches begin at 7:30 a.m.

The two-day tournament usually draws top teams from across the state. This year, however, powerhouses Cherry Creek and Chatfield didn’t make the tournament.

“To get four spots in the semis is pretty good for us,” Steamboat coach John Aragon said. “Minus those two teams, there are still a lot of very good teams.”

And the high winds that affected Steamboat also hit several of the semifinal matches in Grand Junction, which were pushed to today.

Despite the adverse conditions, Aragon said he learned a lot about his team Friday. Even with a young lineup, Aragon said the athletes attacked the tournament and showed that they would be tough to handle as the season progresses. Aragon said he wouldn’t be surprised to see Steamboat in multiple final matches today.

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