• October 15, 2019

HIGH SCHOOL TENNIS: Seminole rallies to knock off Odessa High - Odessa American: Sports

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HIGH SCHOOL TENNIS: Seminole rallies to knock off Odessa High

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Posted: Tuesday, October 8, 2019 10:14 pm

The Odessa High tennis team got its final team match of the season off to a solid start. In the end, however, it was Seminole who responded in a big way.

The Indians took nine of 13 singles matches to come away with a 12-8 victory over the Bronchos Tuesday at the Ratliff Tennis Complex.

“We had a great match today with Odessa High,” Seminole head coach Kevin Gersbach said. “We started off slow but it was great to win those nine matches in singles. Nobody quit and I’m really proud of our team for that.”

“We were able to get off to a good start in doubles,” Odessa High head coach Katelyn Watts said. “They were just a lot stronger in singles and that showed us we need to do a better job of getting the points started.”

Seminole got strong performance on the girls’ side thanks in part to senior Jasmin Klassen. She and partner Alyssa Gonzales defeated the Odessa High team of Shelby Mayhew and Jackelyn Rodriguez 6-4, 6-3, in doubles play while Klassen went on to beat Harley Daniels 6-1, 6-1, in singles play.

“I just did a good job of staying aggressive,” Klassen said. “I also tried to focus on the mental game because that confidence builds up the whole team and not just yourself.”

Things went well for the Bronchos in doubles play, taking four of the seven matches including two of three in both boys and girls singles.

Leading the way was junior Juan Diaz, who won his doubles match with Sebastian Mora over Seminole’s Blaine Dyck and Earl Neufeld, 6-1, 6-2, and followed that up with a 6-2, 7-6 (4) victory over Justin Giersbecht.

“I had great communication with Sebastian during the doubles match and that was really important,” Diaz said. “I started off well in singles but struggled with focus a little bit in the second set. It was close but I was happy I got it back.”

Even with his strong performance, Odessa High couldn’t overcome the ground lost in singles play as the Indians found a late rhythm. The winning point for Seminole was clinched on the boys’ side as Jason Giersbecht defeated Greg Andrade 6-2, 6-2.  

It was also a good follow-up for Seminole after clinching the District 2-4A team tennis title for the first time in program history. The Indians have one more nondistrict dual match Saturday before starting the postseason against Clint Mountain View at 1 p.m., Oct. 15, in Monahans.

As for Odessa High, its fall team tennis season is over. Watts was pleased with how her team responded after a heartbreaking loss to Permian in the District 2-6A finale two weeks ago. She hopes that her team can build off the lessons learned in the fall and carry over to the spring season.

“They did fight to the end and responded well after that loss,” Watts said. “They took that loss kind of tough and we just had to get back into it mentally.”

>> Follow Tony Venegas on Twitter at @OA_TVenegas

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