Duncan tennis girls triumphant in own tourney

Raymundo Frasquillo Photo/Gila Herald: Kaylee Kempton (3-1) follows the ball into her racket for a return. The Duncan No. 1 singles seed is also on the No. 1 doubles team. Duncan hosts Patagonia on Tuesday, March 7, and visits Willcox on Thursday, March 9.

Pima sits atop section standings; Safford, Thatcher unbeaten

By Raymundo Frasquillo

THATCHER – The Brandon Udall-coached Pima tennis girls opened the season with a split of two duals, falling 1-8 at Duncan on Feb. 28 and edging Morenci 5-4 at Eastern Arizona College on March 1. The pairing with Morenci was in section play and the Roughriders lead the section with a 1-0 mark following the first week of March.

Early Division III – Section I standings are Pima (1-1 seeding, 1-0 section), Safford (2-0, 0-0), Duncan (1-0, 0-0), Thatcher (1-0, 0-0), Morenci (0-1, 0-1), Willcox (0-1, 0-0), and Benson (0-2, 0-0).

Safford defeated Florence 8-1 on Feb. 23 and Willcox 5-4 on Feb. 28; Benson fell 3-6 at Saint David on Feb. 28; Thatcher shutout Miami 9-0 on March 2, Tucson Amphitheater blanked Benson 9-0 on March 3, and Duncan captured its all-day tourney title on March 4.

This week (March 6-11), Pima (1-1 overall, 1-0 section) hosts Miami (0-2, 0-0), Safford (2-0, 0-0) hosts Morenci (0-1, 0-1), Duncan (0-1, 0-0) hosts Patagonia (0-0, 0-0), and Willcox (0-1, 0-0) visits Tombstone (0-0, 0-0) on Tuesday, March 7; Thatcher (1-0, 0-0) visits Tucson Pusch Ridge Christian (2-0, 0-0) on Wednesday, March 8; Morenci hosts Miami, Benson visits Pusch Ridge, Duncan visits Willcox, and Thatcher visits Gilbert Classical on Thursday, March 9; and Safford hosts a round robin tourney on Friday, March 10.

H. T. Clothier Invitational

Raymundo Frasquillo Photo/Gila Herald: Safina Blachly (4-0) follows the ball into her racquet for a return. The Saint David sophomore medaled in both the No. 1 singles slot and along with senior Sydney Haynie, the No. 1 doubles slot during the H. T. Clothier Invitational on March 4.

Duncan totaled 19 points to win the 2023 H.T. Clothier Invitational. Saint David and Morenci tied for second with 13 points apiece, and Tombstone was fourth with nine points.

Earning individual medals in singles were Saint David No. 1 junior Safina Blachly (4-0), Saint David No. 2 senior Sydney Haynie (4-0), Tombstone No. 3 junior Mckinzee Meinhardt (3-0), Duncan No. 4 sophomore Camille Miller (4-0), Duncan No. 5 senior Emily Bocken (4-0), and Duncan No. 6 freshman Brendy Paz (3-0).

Medalists in doubles were Saint David No. 1 Blachly – Sydney Haynie (4-0), Tombstone No. 2 senior Skylar Mazzanti – junior Abigail Stottelfield (3-0), and Duncan No. 3 senior Emily Bocken – freshman Emily Evans (2-0).

Round One:

Morenci – 5, Saint David – 4

Raymundo Frasquillo Photo/Gila Herald: Emily Kempton (3-1) serves the ball during a tourney round two singles pairing. The Duncan sophomore is also 3-1 partnering with her sister for the No. 1 doubles slot. The Kempton duo advanced to the quarterfinals before exiting the 2022 state meet.

The Wildcats won two head-to-head pairings, one in singles and one in doubles, but received three forfeit wins, two singles, and one doubles, to win the dual.

Junior Kaitlyn Clark (3-0) defeated freshman Meilee Curtis (2-2) 6-2 and teamed with senior Isabella Villa (2-1) to down the freshman duo of Curtis – Morgan Haynie (2-2) 8-5. Forfeit wins were received by No. 5 sophomore Izzalona Gobert (2-2) and No. 6 freshman Alannah Suarez (2-2) along with the Gobert – Suarez duo (3-1).

For Saint David, junior Safina Blachly (4-0) defeated senior Cambri McCauley (1-3) 6-0, senior Sydney Haynie (4-0) defeated junior Anita Gonzalez (1-3) 6-4, and Morgan Haynie (3-1) defeated senior Isabella Villa (2-2) 6-3.

In doubles, it was Blachly – Sydney Haynie (4-0) defeated McCauley – Gonzalez (1-3) 8-5.

Duncan – 7, Tombstone – 2

The Wildkats notched five singles, a doubles, and a doubled forfeit from the Yellow Jackets.

Senior Kaylee Kempton (3-1) defeated senior Skylar Mazzanti (0-3) 6-0, sophomore Emily Kempton (3-1) defeated junior Jamora Haynes (0-3) 6-1, Miller (4-0) defeated sophomore Akasia Cederlof (0-3) 6-1, Bocken (4-0) defeated Abigail Stottelfield (0-3) 6-2, and Paz defeated Rou Sprott (1-2) 6-0.

Raymundo Frasquillo Photo/Gila Herald: Kaitlyn Clark (2-1) keeps her eyes on the ball during a Duncan tourney return attempt. The Morenci junior is in the No. 3 slot.

The Kempton – Kempton duo (3-1) downed Haynes – Meinhardt (1-2) 8-2 and the Bocken – Evans duo received a forfeit.

For Tombstone, Meinhardt (3-0) defeated sophomore MacKenzie Richins (1-0) 6-0 and the Mazzanti – Stottelfield duo won a tie-breaker from Richins – Miller (2-2) for the 9-8 score.

Round Two:

Duncan – 7, Morenci – 2

The Southern Greenlee County Wildkats took five singles and two doubles matches from their neighbors.

Kaylee Kempton, Emily Kempton, Miller, Bocken, and Paz defeated McCauley 6-1, Gonzalez 6-1, Villa 6-1, Gobert 6-2, and Suarrez 6-1, respectively.

In doubles, Kempton – Kempton and Bocken – Evans (4-0) prevailed 8-0 over McCauley – Gonzalez and 8-2 over Gobert – Suarez, respectively.

Raymundo Frasquillo Photo/Gila Herald: Isabella Villa (2-2) follows the ball over the net. The Morenci senior is in the No. 3 slot.

For Morenci, Clark defeated Richins 6-3 and the Clark – Villa duo downed Richins – Miller 9-7.

Saint David – 4, Tombstone – 4

The Tigers won four head-to-head pairings, three singles, and one doubles while the Yellow Jackets prevailed in a lone singles, and a lone doubles, and received forfeits in two singles.

However, a tie occurred because of a double forfeit in the No. 3 doubles slot.

Saint David’s wins were 6-0 by Blachly over Mazzanti, 6-4 by Sydney Haynie over Jamora Haynes, and 6-1 by Morgan Haynie over Cederlof in singles plus 8-1 by Blachly – Sydney Haynie over Haynes – Meinhardt.

Tombstone’s wins were 6-3 by Meinhardt over Curtis in singles and 8-2 by Mazzanti – Stottelfield over Curtis – Morgan Haynie in doubles.

Round Three:

Saint David – 5, Duncan – 4

In spite of forfeiting three pairings before taking the court, Saint David managed to earn the dual win by taking three singles, a doubles, and accepting a forfeited doubles win.

The Tigers had singles wins of 6-2 by Blachly over Kaylee Kempton, 6-4 by Sydney Haynie over Emily Kempton, and 6-3 by Meinhardt over Miller along with a doubles win of 8-5 by Blachly – Sydney Haynie over Kempton – Kempton. The forfeit was by the Duncan No. 2 duo of Richins – Miller, unable to play via an injury.

For Duncan, Miller defeated Morgan Haynie 6-3. Bocken and Paz plus Bocken – Evans received forfeits from Saint David’s No. 5 and No. 6 singles along with the No. 3 doubles, respectively.

Morenci – 5, Tombstone – 4

The Wildcats won four singles matches and received a doubles forfeit.

Raymundo Frasquillo Photo/Gila Herald: Anita Gonzalez lunges for the ball as she returns it against Pima. The Morenci junior teamed up with senior Cambri McCauley as the No. 1 duo to post an 8-3 win.

Gonzalez, Villa, Gobert, and Suarez defeated Jamora Haynes 6-3, Cederlof 6-0, Stottelfield 6-2, and Sprott 6-1, respectively, and the Gobert – Suarez duo received a forfeit.

For Tombstone, it was Mazzanti over McCauley 8-3 and Meinhardt over Clark 6-4 in singles plus Haynes – Meinhardt and Mazzanti – Stottelfield over McCauley – Gonzalez 8-3 and Clarke – Villa 8-5, respectively.

March 3:

Amphitheater – 9, Benson – 0

The Bobcats were shut out by the Division II Panthers in Tucson.

Junior Ahyoke Hornbuckle defeated senior Destiny Foster (6-0 twice), junior Christina Sengal defeated freshman Kaylee Whitney (6-0, 6-1), Teriza Sengal defeated junior Sierra Brooks (6-0 twice), junior Shanise Bustamante defeated freshman Andrea Hummel (6-0, 6-1), junior Amber Barba defeated junior Kylie Peterson (6-1, 6-0), and senior Jackie Rodriguez defeated freshman Maryann Preston (6-0 twice).

In doubles, Teriza Sengal – Barba defeated Foster – Whitney 8-2, Christina Sengal – sophomore Mele Siego defeated Brooks-Hummel 8-0, and Preston – junior Huishan Chen defeated Macias – Marsh 8-0.

March 2:

Thatcher – 9, Miami – 0

Raymundo Frasquillo Photo/Gila Herald: Kennedy Minor (0-2) returns the ball during the season opener against Morenci. The Pima sophomore faced seniors in her first two matches from the No. 1 slot.

The Eagles swept the Vandals, winning all nine pairings, six singles, and three doubles.

Senior Maren Hatch, senior Lindsay McMaster, junior Maddie Scarborough, freshman Sophia Haynie, junior Zoey Damron, and sophomore Kayla Turley defeated junior Vanessa Stemm (6-0, 6-1), junior Adrianna Lopez (6-0 twice), senior Emily Byington (6-0 twice), junior Jillian Lee (6-1, 6-0), freshman Adrianna Kaulaity (6-1 twice), and junior Aby Poeling (6-0 twice), respectively.

In doubles, Hatch – McMaster, Scarborough – Damron, and Turley – sophomore Audrey Smith defeated Stemm – Lopez, Boyington – Kaulaity, respectively, by identical 8-0 scores.

March 1:

Pima – 5, Morenci – 4

The Roughriders won only three of seven head-to-head pairings from Morenci but won the match as the Wildcats forfeited the number six singles and number three doubles.

Raymundo Frasquillo Photo/Gila Herald: Mia Ashby (1-1) readies for a return against Morenci. The No. 2 Pima sophomore opened the season with a tie-breaker singles win.

Sophomore Mia Ashby (1-1) outlasted Gonzalez in a tie-breaker (1-6, 6-4, 10-5), freshman Merrill DeCrow (1-1) downed Gobert 6-0 and 6-4, and senior Paula Gonzalez (1-1) topped Suarez 6-0 twice.

Senior Lea Pinnow (1-1) and the Gonzalez – Pinnow (1-1) duo received forfeit wins.

For Morenci, McCauley (1-0) defeated sophomore Kennedy Minor (0-2) 6-2 and 6-3, and Villa defeated sophomore Brooklynn Burk 6-4 and 6-1.

In doubles, it was McCauley – Gonzalez and Villa – Gobert over Minor – Ashby (0-2) and Burk – DeCrow (0-2) by identical 8-3 scores.

Feb. 28:

Duncan – 8, Pima – 1

Duncan won all but the number six singles as freshman Emily Evans (0-1) succumbed in two sets to Pinnow (6-2, 6-1).

Kaylee Kempton, Emily Kempton, Richins, Miller, and Bocken defeated Minor (6-0, 6-1), Ashby (6-0, 6-4), Burk (6-1, 7-5), DeCrow (6-0 twice), and Gonzalez (1-6, 6-4, 10-8), respectively.

In doubles, Kempton – Kempton and Richins – Miller topped Minor – Ashby and Burk – DeCrow by identical 8-1 scores, and Bocken – Evans bested Gonzalez – Pinnow 8-3.

Safford – 5, Willcox – 4

The Bulldogs won four singles and a doubles pairing to win the dual in Cochise County.

Junior Hazel Green (2-0) defeated junior Valerie Durazo (0-1) 9-8 in a tie-breaker, junior Rachel Peterson (2-0) defeated senior Kennedy Peterson (0-1) 8-6, junior Camille Alder defeated junior Marissa Paz (0-1) 8-3, and senior Savanna Clonts (2-0) defeated junior Teresa Trujillo (0-1) 8-6.

The doubles win was 6-4 by Green – Peterson (2-0) over Peterson – Paz (0-1)

Raymundo Frasquillo Photo/Gila Herald: Merrill DeCrow (1-1) tosses the ball up for a serve. The Pima freshman won her initial varsity match against Morenci from the No. 4 slot.

For Willcox, junior Mia Mungarro (1-0) defeated senior Kali Gluyas (1-1) and junior Alex Hernandez (1-0) defeated junior Brynlie Alder (1-1) in singles, both by identical 8-2 scores.

In doubles, Mungarro – Durazo (1-0) defeated Gluyas – Clonts (1-1) 6-1, and Hernandez – Trujillo (1-0) defeated Alder – Alder (1-1) 6-0.

Saint David – 6, Benson – 3

The Tigers won all six head-to-head pairings from the Bobcats, four singles, and two doubles.

It was Blachly over Foster (6-0 twice), Sydney Haynie over Whitney (6-0, 6-1), Curtis over Brooks (6-3, 6-1), Morgan Haynie over Hummel (6-3 twice) in singles plus Blachly – Sydney Haynie over Foster – Whitney 8-1 and Curtis – Morgan Haynie over Brooks – Hummel 8-4 in doubles.

Benson’s wins were each forfeits, for No. 5 Macias and No, 6 Marsch as well as for the No. 3 Macias – Marsch duo.

Feb. 23:

Safford – 9, Florence – 0

According to posted individual pairings, the Bulldogs blanked the host Gophers 9-0.

Gluyas, Green, Peterson, Camille Alder, and Brynlie Alder defeated senior Grace Moak (6-1, 6-0), sophomore Belem Vasquez (6-0 twice), junior Lillie Rodriguez (6-1, 1-6, 10-1), freshman Giovanna Grey (6-0, 6-1), and sophomore Kaylin Dolan (score unavailable), respectively. Clonts received a forfeit.

In doubles, Gluyas – Clonts and Green – Peterson defeated Moak – Rodriguez 8-3 and Vasquez – Grey 8-1, respectively. The Alder-Alder duo received a forfeit.