A strong performance by Grantsville sophomore Camden Killian helped the Cowboys finish in a tie with Morgan for sixth place at the 3A state tennis tournament, which took place Saturday at Liberty Park in Salt Lake City.
Killian advanced to the semifinals with two victories on Friday. He blasted Derek Nguyen of Richfield in the first round 6-2, 6-0, and later that day prevailed in a marathon match against Hunter Moore of Richfield 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 to advance to the 3A semifinals on Saturday.
Killian pulled off a major upset Saturday morning in a match moved indoors at Liberty Park, due to a rainstorm. Killian, ranked fifth in the 3A third singles category, faced the top ranked player from Ogden Peter Ondrus. Killian lost a pair of matches to Ondrus earlier in the season. Ondrus grabbed the first set 6-4, but Killian caught fire in the second and third sets to win the match and advance to the championship match 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.
The three-set marathon took its toll on Killian in the first set against Rowland Hall’s Luca Bressloff. Bressloff had Killian on his heels in the first set with some hard pounding, well-placed forehand shots and rolled to a 6-0 victory..
The match was moved indoors in the bubble in the second set, much to the liking of Killian, who loves to play in that setting. Killian battled Bressloff in the second set, but lost the championship match 0-6, 5-7.
Rowland Hall rolled to the championship with 65-team-points, with state titles in all the singles matches and second-place finishes in the two doubles categories.
The Waterford School finished a distant second with 34 points, followed by Ogden 33, Juab 24, American Heritage 19, Grantsville 18, Morgan 18, Richfield 13 and North Sanpete 10.
The 3A state tennis tournament included 24 schools, including some 2A teams.
Killian contributed 10 of Grantsville’s 18-team-points with 3 points from Hunter Bell at second singles.
Bell, seeded fifth in the tourney, rolled past Judge’s John Witt in the first round 6-2, 6-2, and nearly pulled off an upset in the second round against Rowan Hodell of The Waterford School. Grantsville football’s starting quarterback pushed Hodell the entire match, but Hodell was able to edge Bell 7-6 (5), 6-4.
Grantsville’s first singles player Rowan Nielsen earned a crucial team point in the play-in tournament at Richfield on May 5 when he upset Joshua Madsen of North Sanpete in three sets.
The Cowboys’ second doubles team of Blake Bunderson and Landen Madsen earned 3 team points. They battled in two long matches on Friday with a narrow victory in the first match and a narrow loss in the second match. The duo defeated Stanley Crouch and John Cook of Manti in three sets to open the tournament, winning 7-5, 4-6, 6-3. They seemed to lose steam in the second match on Friday losing to a pair from Ogden 5-7, 6-3, 6-0.
Grantsville’s first doubles pair of Brennan Harvey and Bennett Reilley won easily in the play-in tourney, but lost in straight sets in the opening match on Friday to Richfield 1-6, 7-6 (5).