The Boonville Lady Pirates tennis team couldn’t have played any better over the weekend while competing in the Osage Tennis Tournament.
Having lost to the host team earlier in the season, the Lady Pirates made it count when they needed it the most by edging Osage by 4 1/2 points in the final-team standings 15-10 1/2.
Mexico, meanwhile, finished third in the tournament with nine points while Richland placed fourth with 5 1/2 points.
As far as place-finishers, Boonville No. 1 singles player Amy Shipman took first while Amanda Cook finished second. Meanwhile, in doubles, the No. 1 team of Carley Esser and Kelsey Gerlach finished second only to Osage.
Boonville tennis coach Stephanie Green said taking first in this tourney was exactly what the girls needed to boost morale and give them confidence going into the later par t of their season.
“Shipman showed her confidence and experience as a number one player throughout the day, she won decisively and quickly until the championship match against Amanda Cook,” Green said. “Cook started strong and was in the lead through most of the match, but she had played a tough first round match against Mexico’s number one player the round before and was wearing down a little. She also had a long match against her Osage opponent in the first round and played very very well. It was great to see our two players really playing competitively with each other for the title. For Cook – this was her second year of medaling.
“Gerlach/Esser took a few games to get back into a rhythm, but got through the first two matches relatively easily. They started very strong in the championship match and stayed within a game until the ninth game. They were playing with ad and in the 2-2 game went to deuce about ten times with Gerlach serving. It was stressful and the girls worked really hard to overcome their errors and to make things happen. Unfortunately they just didn’t convert on some breaks and didn’t come out on top.
“Leathers/Williams played against some good competition and played them closely. Both players stepped up and showed confidence hitting more solidly and communicating on the court. They used some strategy and were able to make better shot selection and are gaining singles playing experience so their growth is evident with each match. We’re very proud of the level of competitiveness, sportsmanship and confidence our players showed this weekend.”
For Shipman, the day started with a 8-1 win over Nutcha Pongsuea of Mexico 8-1. Then, after beating Mandee Reahr of Osage in the semifinal round by the identical score of 8-1, Shipman came back and won 8-6 over Amanda Cook, who also play No. 1 doubles together for Boonville, for the title.
As for Cook, she won 8-6 over Hannah Bayshore of Osage and then defeated Nandita Thapar of Mexico by the same identical score before losing to Shipman in the championship match.
As Esser and Gerlach, they defeated Kaitlyn Ruck and Adora Bax of Osage in the opening round by a score of 8-5 and then won 8-2 over the team of Sarah Buckley and Kelsey Cottrell of Richland. Meanwhile, in the championship match, the duo fell to Osage’s No. 1 team of Courtney Grasshoff and Kristina Ruck by a score of 8-6.
Boonville’s No. 2 doubles team of Jessica Leathers and Kelsie Williams had a little tougher time. After falling to Grasshoff and Ruck in the opening round by a score of 8-4, the duo dropped its second match of the tournament against Richland’s No. 1 team by a score of 8-5.