BIG RAPIDS — Traverse City Central canceled its tennis tournament Saturday, but the Trojans were still able to scramble and put together a match.
And a quality one, too.
The Trojans went with Plan B and met defending Division 1 champion Grosse Pointe South at the Ferris State Tennis Center for a dual meet Saturday.
The Blue Devils won the match 6-2, but Central coach Larry Nykerk said the experience against one of the state’s top teams was invaluable. The Trojans are ranked No. 7 in Division 1, and Grosse Pointe South is No. 3.
“We had to get something in with all the matches being canceled,” Nykerk said. “Every match was a battle. For us, we won seeds for states with the comparative scores and confidence that we can play with the best. So we made something out of nothing.”
Three of Central’s six setbacks went to three sets.
Paige Cooley won at No. 1 singles 6-1, 6-3, and Amelia Pezzetti and Molly Whiting took a 6-2, 3-6, 14-12 victory.
Kristi Druskovich took her opponent to three sets at No. 3 singles before a 4-6, 6-4, 10-8 setback, as did Taylor Weckstein at No. 4 singles (2-6, 6-3, 10-2 setback) and No. 1 doubles flight Kitty Mast/Elizabeth Pappas (4-6, 6-3, 12-10).
Central hosts Cadillac on Tuesday before facing the states top two Division 1 teams on back-to-back days next weekend. The Trojans take on No. 1 Clarkston and No. 2 Port Huron Northern at Friday’s Holly double duals, and then see those same two foes Saturday at the eight-team Ann Arbor Huron Invitational, an event in which each team is ranked in the top 10 in its division.
St. Francis 2nd at Essexville Invite
Traverse City St. Francis placed second in the eight-team Essexville Invitational.
Coach Jeff Hughes said he though it was perhaps the only high school tennis tournament in the state that was actually played Saturday.
“We played in weather that was at best 30 (degrees),” Hughes said, “with a wind chill that made it about 26 or 27.”
Bloomfield Hills Sacred Heart won the tournament with 20 points, and St. Francis and Portland tied for second with 16, well ahead of the rest of the field.
Freshman Amanda Bandrowski was the Gladiators’ lone winner, but TCSF had medalists at seven of the eight flights, which were played with single pro sets to speed it up.
Bandrowski was 3-0 at No. 1 singles, topping Bay City All Saints 8-2 in the title match.
Chloe Lodge/Bailey Chouinard were second at No. 2 doubles with a 2-1 mark, as were Lena Popp/Laura Hansen at No. 3.
Bethany Rochey took third at No. 3 singles with a 2-1 record, and No. 2 doubles Courtney McCardel/Emily Szmania and No. 4 doubles Sarah Stayman/Rosie Wilson did the same.
Natalie Burke was 2-1 at No. 2 single to take fifth.
TC Crusaders split pair of games
Dan Wilson scored four goals in a 12-9 Traverse City Crusaders win over Cadillac.
Ben Colburn had a hat trick, and Jay Jones, Gunner Carroll, Joe Trucco, Joe Summers and Tanner Hobbs had single goals. Nick Buday made 24 saves in goal.
The Crusaders — who play Thursday at Cadillac — also dropped a 10-6 decision to Sault Ste. Marie, with Wilson scoring a pair of goals and Colburn, Jones, Trucco and Summers one each.