Gray has good week for Hillsboro tennis

The Hillsboro tennis team received three third-place finishes Friday at the Sterling invitational tournament.

No. 2 singles player Tyler Funk defeated Andrew McPherson of Sterling, 8-7, with a 10-8 tiebreak. He lost to Trey Toews of Hesston, 8-4.

The No. 1 doubles team of Harry Faber and Jeff Pritchard defeated Aidan Crosby and Luc Robson of Sterling, 8-0. The team lost in an 8-7 tiebreak match to Cameron Fair and Caleb Hendricks of Sterling and to Grant Dahlsten and Garrett Roth of Hesston, 8-5.

“Harry is battling a nagging injury,” head coach Stuart Holmes said. “In an effort to try to get Harry completely healthy, we played him with Jeff at No. 1 doubles.”

The No. 2 doubles team of Ty Carey and River Cecil defeated Ian Stephens and Micah Watney of Sterling, 8-6, for their first victory this season. The team lost to Henry Weiner and Coby Comley of Sterling, 8-0, and Zachary Baldauf and Nolan Casimir of Hesston, 8-0.

“Another highlight was Ty and River’s improved play that led them to a close match victory,” Holmes said. “They haven’t had a lot of success but have kept working with a great attitude.”

Daniel Gray was playing No. 1 singles for the first time. He defeated David Kitzinger of Hesston, 8-7 (10-8 tiebreak). He lost 8-3 to Brian Walker of Sterling and 8-2 to Zack Brashear of Sterling.

“It was great to see them mentally stay with their matches and be able to pull out a victory,” Holmes said of Gray and Funk’s 10-8 tiebreaker wins.

The Trojans also competed in the Circle quad on Thursday.

Playing No. 2 singles, Gray earned a second place medal. He defeated Josh Larson of Circle, 8-4, and Taylor Carlson of Haven, 8-2. He lost 8-1 to Nathan Jones of Valley Center.

“Daniel played consistently well throughout the meet and did a good job of keeping the ball in play,” Holmes said. “Daniel hustles to get to every ball.”

Faber won one match on Thursday, defeating Rian Borntrager of Haven, 8-1. He lost 8-6 to Matt Dolezal of Valley Center and 8-4 to Tony Treweeke of Circle.

“The injury right now impacted his play,” Holmes said. “Also, the two loses were to quality opponents, who would have given Harry a good match even if he were 100 percent.”

The No. 1 doubles team of Funk and Pritchard defeated Ian Brannan and Cody McKinnis of Haven, 8-1. They lost an 8-7 (7-3 tiebreak) match to J.J. Hunter and Tracy Keplar of Circle.

“Jeff and Tyler continue to show promise as a doubles team,” Holmes said.

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