Bio

DON KETCHUM is a native of Phoenix. He was a sportswriter for The Arizona Republic/The Phoenix Gazette for more than three decades. He covered high school sports on several occasions as well as the Arizona Diamondbacks, Arizona Cardinals and Arizona State sports. From 2008-14, he was a staff writer for AIA365.com, the web site of the Arizona Interscholastic Association.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Another triumph for swimmers, divers

Thursday (Sept. 21) was a big day in the pool for Xavier Prep’s swimmers and divers.

The Gators prevailed in a dual meet at Phoenix Desert Vista, 114-72.

Xavier’s Alyssa Largay was the top diver, adding to the points total.

The Gators won a pair of relay events.

The first was the 200-yard medley relay. XCP swimmers were Katie McCoy, Pao Guerra, Olivia Paliscak and Mary Roediger.

The second triumph came in the 200-yard freestyle relay with Guerra, Thea Cartier, Vica Dow and Roediger.

Xavier had the top two finishers in the 200-yard freestyle with Dow and Sydney Millane.

McCoy won a pair of events, the 100-yard backstroke and the 200-yard individual medley. Roediger earned a win in the 50-yard freestyle.

The Gators also had the top two finishers in the 100-yard breaststroke with Guerra and Mia Rankin.

XCP will be participating in the annual Xavier-Brophy Invitational at the Brophy Pool on Friday (Sept. 22) and Saturday (Sept. 23).

Keep it going Gators !!

Gator volleyball defeats Desert Vista

The Xavier Prep volleyball express keeps right on rolling.

The Gators won for the 14th time in 15 matches on Thursday night (Sept. 21), taking a three-game sweep of visiting Phoenix Desert Vista. Scores were 25-17, 25-15 and 25-9.

“We got a slow start, particularly in the second game, had a lot of unforced errors, but then we got it together,’’ said coach Lamar-Renee Bryant. “Overall, I’d say we had some good, all-around play.’’

Xavier jumped out to a quick advantage in the opening game. Desert Vista showed signs of getting back into it midway through the game, but the Gators kept the Thunder at arm’s length.

Sophomore outside hitter Bri McKnight and senior outside hitter Lanie Wagner began to pound the ball with regularity, a scenario that would be repeated in the two games that followed.

Xavier completed the first game with a block and then a kill by senior Ericka Snopko.

Desert Vista grabbed the lead for most of the first part of the second game. The score was knotted at 11 and then the Gators scored seven straight points to gain control. A service ace by senior libero Alyna Draper put XCP over the top.

There was more Xavier domination in the third game. The serving of junior Trinity Cavanaugh proved to be a key factor. The final four points came on a kill by Snopko, a pair of out-of-bounds shots by Desert Vista and a return attempt by sophomore Jasmine Knight that hit the top of the net, snuck over and fell to the floor.

Next week, the Gators will have back-to-back road matches on Tuesday (Sept. 26) and Wednesday (Sept. 27) at Chandler Basha and Chandler High, respectively.

After that, the road will take them to the annual Nike Tournament of Champions, most of which will be held in Phoenix, on Thursday (Sept. 28) and Friday (Sept. 29).


Golfers, runners still on busy schedules

After winning a three-way match with Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor and Phoenix St. Mary’s on Wednesday (Sept. 20), the Xavier Prep golf team will be sharing host duties with Brophy Prep this weekend on Friday (Sept. 22) and Saturday (Sept. 23) in the Brophy/Xavier Invitational at Grand Canyon University Golf Course in west Phoenix.

Score of the most recent match at the Cave Creek Golf Course in north Phoenix were Xavier 147, Sandra Day O’Connor 181 and St. Mary’s 251.

Cross country – The Xavier cross-country team is back in action on Saturday (Sept. 23) when it participates in the annual Doug Conley Invitational at Shalimar Golf Course in Tempe. The race begins at 7:15 a.m.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Fatigue doesn't fit XCP volleyball

After a strong effort at the Durango Invitational in Las Vegas over the weekend, the Xavier Prep volleyball team returned to Arizona for another in-state match on Tuesday (Sept. 19).

The Gators picked up where they left off, excelling in all phases of the game for a 3-0 victory over host Gilbert Highland. Scores were 25-9, 25-16 and 25-16. XCP is now 13-1, with its only loss coming to Torrey Pines (San Diego) in the Durango.

Playing seven matches over two days as the Gators did in the Durango can drain a team of its energy. Xavier did not show any evidence of that.

“We didn’t practice Monday (Sept. 18) and we came out super focused (for Highland),’’ said Xavier coach Lamar-Renee Bryant.

The Gators continue to feed off a 3-2 win at Gilbert Perry last week, a match in which Xavier started the contest 0-2.

“After the Perry match and the good showing in Vegas, we are super confident right now and are playing at a high level,’’ Bryant said.

As if dealing with Xavier’s strength wasn’t enough, Highland did not help itself, committing numerous unforced errors.

Sophomore Bri McKnight had a productive first game with a handful of kills, a few blocks and a service ace.

“Bri was super aggressive out there,’’ Bryant said.

Xavier usually gets big efforts out of its top players, and a different player each match will step up and push the Gators over the top. In the Highland match, that was senior middle blocker Erika Snopko.

“She had some big blocks and kills and attacked over the middle,’’ Bryant said.

Junior outside hitter Hayley Nash provided the decisive final point in the second game with a kill. The last few points were delayed when a Highland player bumped her head on the padded post that supports the net. She was lying on the floor for a few minutes but later returned to the Hawks’ bench and fortunately did not appear to be seriously injured.

Highland stayed close early in the third game, but Xavier gradually began to pull away. The last Gator points were produced by sophomore middle blocker Jasmine Knight on a block and McKnight on a kill.

The Gators return home to the Activity Center on Thursday (Sept. 21) for a match against Phoenix Desert Vista. Start time is 6 p.m.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Gators win Silver Division in Durango Classic


It always is a challenge trying to survive against a strong field of volleyball teams in the 64-team Durango Classic in Las Vegas, which was played on Friday (Sept. 14) and Saturday (Sept. 15).

Xavier Prep’s Gators rose to the occasion again, winning six of their seven matches and taking home the title trophy in the Silver Division. XCP’s only loss was to Torrey Pines (San Diego) in a qualifying match early Saturday morning.

Xavier's Gators won the Silver Division in the Durango Classic volleyball tournament (Photo courtesy of Lamar-Renee Bryant).
Xavier, originally playing in Pool 8, was in control most of the way on Friday’s first day in defeating its three opponents, Cathedral Catholic (San Diego), Notre Dame Belmont (Belmont, Calif.) and McQueen (Reno, Nev.).

“Our biggest competition was Cathedral Catholic,’’ said Xavier coach Lamar-Renee Bryant. “They were big, but we controlled them with our serves and had strong performances from (outside hitters) Lanie (Wagner) and Bri (McKnight).’’

Wagner and McKnight played well against Torrey Pines and setter Shannon Shields stood out on defense.

After the 20-25, 23-25 setback against Torrey Pines, Xavier came back to claim three straight victories. Those were 25-16, 28-26 over Marin Catholic (Kentfield, Calif.), 25-11, 25-15 over Edison High (Huntington, Beach, Calif.) and Marymount (Los Angeles) in the Silver title match, 25-21 and 25-23.

Bryant said libero Alyna Draper’s defense stepped up against Marymount and middle blocker Ericka Snopko “had great play.’’

Wagner, a senior, was named to the all-tournament team for the second year in a row.

Xavier  now is 12-1 overall and will be back in its home state on Tuesday (Sept. 19) with a road match at Gilbert Highland. That will be followed by a home match against Phoenix Desert Vista on Thursday (Sept. 21). Start times for both will be 6 p.m.


XCP badminton players come through

Xavier Prep’s badminton team put forth a strong effort on Saturday (Sept.16) in the eight-team Forner Invitational at Phoenix Sunnyslope.

Four players earned second-place medals for their respective categories: Alexa Wolfson (#2 singles), Misaal Irfan (#4), Maeve Lee (#5) and Anai Hernandez (#6).

Xavier had two category winners in doubles. They were Maddie Reinhart and Wolfson (#1) and Hernandez and Maddie Dines (#3).

XCP plays a home match at the Activity Center on Tueday (Sept. 19) against Scottsdale Desert Mountain.

Congrats, Gators !!

Friday, September 15, 2017

Badminton heads to tourney after victory

Xavier Prep’s badminton team, playing its third match in three days on Thursday (Sept. 14), rolled to a 9-0 victory over visiting Anthem Boulder Creek at the Activity Center.

The long stretch will continue on Saturday (Sept. 16) when the Gators participate in the eight-team Forner Invitational tournament at Phoenix Sunnyslope.

Other teams are Sunnyslope, Phoenix Greenway, Glendale Independence, Phoenix Washington, Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor, Phoenix Horizon and Chandler High.

Playing a lot of matches in a shorter period is good, but it also limits the amount of time that can be devoted to the players working on some of the aspects that could help them down the road, perhaps in the postseason.

“We talk about what we need to do at the end of each game, about what we did well and what to expect for the next match, but we also have to try to apply that in practice, the repetition. That’s what makes practice so valuable,’’ said Xavier coach Susan Contreras.

“We did pretty well today at being efficient. I think we lessened our errors. But we still have a lot of work to do.’’

One of the key contributions against Boulder Creek came from senior Alexa Wolfson.

She stepped in as the No. 1 singles player after Contreras learned that Maddie Reinhart would not be available. Wolfson picked up an 11-1, 11-3 victory and joined senior Rebecca Ryan for a 15-3, 15-0 sweep in doubles.

Junior Maddie Dines played in singles at No. 6 and got an 11-0, 11-1 victory.

Xavier Prep 9, Boulder Creek 0

Singles

Alexa Wolfson 11-1, 11-3.

Mimi Zurbriggen 11-1, 11-1.

Misaal Irfan 11-0, 11-0.

Maeve Lee 11-3, 11-4.

Anai Hernandez 11-5, 11-6.

Maddie Dines 11-0, 11-1.

Doubles

Wolfson-Rebecca Ryan 15-3, 15-0.

Irfan-Lee 15-5, 15-5.

Hernandez-Dines 15-0, 15-3.

Golf win over Notre Dame keeps XCP unbeaten

Xavier Prep’s golf team had three of the top four finishers and kept its unbeaten string intact with a 140-155 victory over Scottsdale Notre Dame Prep on Thursday (Sept. 13) at Phoenix Country Club. The event was a make-up from the originally scheduled Aug. 29 match.

Sophomore Ashley Menne again was atop the leaderboard with a 2-under-par 34. Junior Holly Otlewski and freshman Mary Doss each shot a 1-under 35, good enough for a second-place tie with Notre Dame’s Jordan Weaver.

The Gators will play again on Wednesday (Sept. 20) against Phoenix St. Mary’s at the Cave Creek Golf Course in north Phoenix.

Xavier scores

Ashley Menne 34 (-2), Holly Otlewski 35 (-1), Mary Doss 35 (-1), Millburn Ho 36 (E), Eve Worden 36 (E), Bailee Tayles 36 (E), Lauren Garcia 37 (+1), Madeline Brown 38 (+2), Laura Lu 39 (+3), Emily Cons 41 (+5), Lauren Faulkner 42 (+6), Danae Bravo 49 (+13).

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Gator volleyball stages epic comeback

There is no other way to say it.

Volleyball fans witnessed one of the most stunning high school sports reversals possible on Wednesday night (Sept. 13).

Down 0-2 in the best-of-five meeting between unbeaten 6A Premier Region rivals, Xavier found new life in Game 3 and beyond to take the match against host Gilbert Perry. Scores were 17-25, 14-25, 25-23, 25-21 and 15-13.

Afterward, it seemed the Gators themselves almost were as stunned as Perry’s Pumas.

Xavier coach Lamar-Renee Bryant walked toward the bench to gather her belongings and her thoughts. She smiled and shook her head.

“That was fun. That was insane,’’ she said.

Bryant said that as the tide began to turn against Perry, she referred to a marathon 32-30 victory over Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor that sealed that match the night before as an example of never giving up.

“They (Perry) were kicking our tails, taking some big swings,’’ Bryant said. “We were too passive and they tore us apart.’’

The size and strength of the Pumas, who were 13-0, including eight in the recent House of Payne Invitational tournament at Chandler High, were taking a toll.

But somehow, some way, Xavier found new life and sits at 6-0 as it travels to Las Vegas for the prestigious Durango Classic on Friday (Sept. 15) and Saturday (Sept. 16). The Gators are expected to play seven games in that event.

Against Perry, the Gators battled back to record a 25-23 victory in the third game, finished off by a kill from senior outside hitter Lanie Wagner.

The fourth game went back and forth, with a 19-19 tie entering the home stretch. Sophomore outside hitter Bri McKnight had a strong effort at the net both offensively and defensively and had a key service ace to make it 23-20 Xavier. Wagner again stepped up for a decisive kill and the momentum had officially shifted.

Xavier led midway through the third game, but Perry rallied for a 12-11 lead (fifth and deciding games only go to 15 points). Wagner again rose to the occasion, getting three kills in the Gators’ final four points.

Asked how Xavier did it, Wagner said, “I don’t know. We obviously didn’t play well those first two games, so we figured we had nothing to lose. We came out and played our best.’’

Before the season began, Wagner talked about improving her game since last season, playing club ball and with the Gators during the preseason. Near the top were her vision and overall court sense.

Some of her kills were along the sideline instead of the middle, and that helped the Gators regroup.

“I tried to see the whole court before I hit,’’ Wagner said. “I saw that the block (blockers) wasn’t close, so I tried to hit it in the best place that I could.’’

The two teams will play a rematch, this time at Xavier, on Oct. 18.



Golf, badminton produce victories

Xavier Prep’s golf and badminton teams triumphed on Wednesday (Sept. 13).

The golfers returned to their Phoenix Country Club home and defeated Phoenix Pinnacle, 136-145.

Sophomore Ashley Menne took medalist honors with a 6-under-par 30.

Other Xavier scores:

Junior Emily Cons, 1-under 35 (tie for third), freshman Mary Doss, 35, (tie for third), junior Eve Worden, even-par 36 (fifth), sophomore Breyana Matthews, 1-over-par 37 (tie for sixth), junior Holly Otlewski, 37 (tie for sixth), junior Laura Lu, 2-over-par 38 (tie for ninth), sophomore Millburn Ho, 38 (tie for ninth), freshman Lauren Garcia, 3-over-par 39 (12th), freshman Bailee Tayles, 5-over-par 41 (tie for 14th), senior Madeline Brown, 41 (tie for 14th), sophomore Danae Bravo, 7-over-par 43 (17th), senior Lauren Faulkner, 9-over-par 45 (19th) and sophomore Sydney Trout, 13-over-par 49 (20th).

The Gators will play a make-up match against Scottsdale Notre Dame Prep on Thursday at 3 p.m. at Phoenix Country Club. After that, the team will return to the course on Sept. 20 against Phoenix St. Mary’s at the Cave Creek Golf Course in Phoenix.

Badminton

Xavier suffered its first loss of the season, 5-4, in a makeup match at Phoenix Desert Vista on Tuesday (Sept. 12), but rebounded with a 6-3 road win at Phoenix Horizon on Wednesday (Sept. 13).

The Gators (6-1) are due to play a match for the third straight day on Thursday (Sept. 14), a home encounter with Anthem Boulder Creek.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Wheels keep on turning for mountain bikers

Interest in the sport of mountain biking continues to climb for potential competitors at Xavier Prep.

The Xavier contingent is in its fourth year of an alliance with all-male Brophy Prep in the Arizona Interscholastic Cycling League.

Participation in the sport at Xavier now has reached double digits (10). Skill levels vary. XCP-BCP coach Rich Perrott said three Gator riders participated in most of last year’s events. Now the team has four event competitors with two or three others on the verge of taking the next step.

Xavier-Brophy competes in Division I (there also is a Division II). Perrott estimates there are about 900 riders from schools across the state.

The maturation process for Xavier riders reached a new level in the first race of the season, on Sunday (Sept. 10) at Fort Tuthill Park in Flagstaff. Xavier will have four more races, on Sept. 24 at Pioneer Park in Prescott, on Oct. 8 at the Wren Arena in Sierra Vista, on Oct. 22 at the McDowell Mountain Park in Fountain Hills and on Nov. 5 at the White Tank Mountain Regional Park in the west Valley (Waddell). All races begin at 9 a.m.

“We are beyond happy. We finally got someone up on the podium (top five finishers),’’ Perrott said.

It came in the girls’ sophomore race, and Heather Kwapiszeski nipped teammate Erin Hill at the finish line.


Xavier sophomore Heather Kwapiszeski, far right, earned a spot among the mountain biking elite with a fifth-place finish in last weekend's race in Flagstaff. (Photo courtesy of Rich Perrott).



Perrott, who is assisted by Blake McClelland and Kevin Hill, said both riders are outstanding athletes with a great deal of versatility.

“Erin has played basketball and Heather has been in soccer and cross country,’’ he said.

“Heather was very excited about her accomplishment. She joined us last year as kind of a casual bike rider, but she has turned into a very tenacious racer. The sky is the limit.’’

As a team, Xavier-Brophy finished in eighth place. It was a good place to start. Sierra Vista Buena won by a single point over Prescott High.

The race course at Flagstaff featured a 5.8-mile loop with a 344-foot climb per lap. The older, more experienced riders go as long as four laps while the sophomores and freshmen go two laps. The races go in a counterclockwise direction.

Xavier’s Sam Sandoval finished 15th in the sophomore race and Natalie Fuchs finished 17th in the freshman race.

So it is back to work for the Gators this week. The girls and their Brophy compadres usually have trail rides on Tuesdays and Saturdays (when there is no race on Sunday) and a “spin’’ session on Thursdays.

Perrott said if a student expresses an interest in mountain biking, they can use one of 10 “loaner’’ bikes and helmets to see if they like it, and includes consultation with the parents.

“We have seen a lot of growth and hope to see more,’’ Perrott said. “Sister Lynn and the athletic department at Xavier have been very supportive of us.’’

Xavier Prep Mountain Biking roster

Lulu Castro (Jr.), Natalie Fuchs (Fr.), Charlotte Heffron (So.), Erin Hill (So.), Yacinta Irakoze (Jr.), Heather Kwapiszeski (So.), Sydney Larriva (So.), Isabella Plumb (Jr.), Sam Sandoval (So.), Catherine Wandachowicz (So.).

Monday, September 11, 2017

Gator swim-dive wins Wolves Classic

The Xavier Prep swimming and diving season just keeps getting better.

The Gators came up with another powerful early season finish on Saturday (Sept. 9) with a victory in the Wolves Classic at Chandler High School. Approximately two dozen schools competed from around the state.

Xavier scored a 264-254 victory over Chandler. The point total included diving which was held Tuesday (Sept. 5). Xavier junior Alyssa Largay won the event with 404.35 points. Junior Molly Cahill was eighth at 322.30, junior Talle Donley was ninth at 309.20 and sophomore Hannah Jemsek was 13th at 275.85.

The 200-yard medley relay team got the Gators off to a quick start by winning the first event on Saturday. The four girls who competed were freshman Sydney Millane, freshman Paola Guerra, sophomore Olivia Paliscak and freshman Kelly Scott.

Freshman Mia Rankin had an impressive finish in the 500-yard freestyle, moving up from second place to the front late in the race to win it.

Adding to the Xavier points total by finishing in the top eight of their events and recording state provisional times were sophomore Vica Dow in the 100- and 200-yard freestyles, Scott in the 50-yard freestyle and Guerra in the 100-yard breaststroke.

The Gators will swim again on Thursday (Sept. 14) with a dual meet against Chandler Hamilton at the Brophy Prep pool. Start time is 4 p.m.

  

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Freshman Braun, XCP runners finish strong

Freshman Sammy Braun wanted to make her first cross-country meet special, and her Xavier Prep teammates also wanted to make their first meet of the season a moment to remember.

Mission accomplished, and then some.

The Gators had a stunning performance in the three races of the day on Saturday (Sept. 9) in the Fountain Hills Invite at Fountain Hills Park.

With Braun leading the way, Xavier had six of their seven runners finish in the top 10 of the 5K varsity race, and the Gators posted a team-winning 20 points. Mesa Mountain View was a distant second with 92 points and Phoenix Mountain Pointe was third with 99.

Junior Karli Baker won the 5K junior-senior race, and Xavier rolled to another team triumph in the 5K freshman-sophomore race as sophomore Kristen Keeble finished in second place.

The way the varsity girls came through was even more impressive, considering the fact that the team’s five seniors were absent because they were taking SAT exams.

It will be interesting to see how those five are woven into the team’s fabric as the season moves forward.

“The first meet is always a test, and this was a very good sign,’’ said Xavier coach Dave Van Sickle.

“Practice after practice after practice, you never really know how things will go together in a meet. One thing we know is the girls are very fit, and it showed. We have girls who are racers out there, not just runners.’’

Xavier runners are happy after dominating in the Fountain Hills Invite (photo by Don Ketchum).
Braun fits into that category, for sure.

She was elated about her performance. She was timed in 19:09.9.

“I was nervous,’’ she said. “I had been working all summer to get to this point.

“We have a great team and we were looking forward to this meet. We communicated pretty well, especially at the start. We were telling each other, “You’re good, you’re good,’ when we were trying to get into position. I think we felt really good about that. And sometimes you don’t have to say anything, you can just feel each other out there.’’

It was a sprint to the finish line, and Braun crossed it first, 2.1 seconds ahead of Mountain View’s Kailey Welch.

How did Braun approach that situation?

“I just tell myself, “Don’t look back. Just make sure you finish,’ ’’ she said.

Other Xavier efforts in the varsity race:

Freshman Cami Merickel, third, 19:20.1; junior Helen Innes, fifth, 19:27.1; sophomore Mia Olsen, sixth, 19:31.7; junior Karina Hawkins, ninth, 19:48.9, freshman Jamie Stelnik, 10th, 19:49.2; and junior Karina Smith, 13th, 20:20.3.

Xavier had only three runners in the junior-senior race, making the Gators ineligible for team honors (five runners were mandatory). But the Gators still made a big statement.

Baker had a time of 21:29.6. Junior Josie Venezia was fourth at 22:05.2 and junior Megan Woodbury was 18th at 24:26.1.

Xavier scored 24 points in the freshman-sophomore race, with Scottsdale Saguaro second at 110 and Phoenix Horizon third at 111.

Results for XCP runners in the freshman-sophomore race:

Keeble second, 20:46.6; sophomore Grace Valandra, third, 21:53.2; freshman Joey Hernanez, fourth, 21:56.3; sophomore Kaitlyn Lauck, eighth, 22:45.9; freshman Sophia Healy, 11th, 22:49.5; sophomore Hannah Phillippi, 19th, 23:32.6; freshman Caroline Calihan, 33rd, 25:06.1; sophomore Mikayla Chavez, 74th, 28:17.4; freshman Emma Chester, 78th, 28:27.8.

The Gators will have a couple more weeks to tune up for their next meet, the annual Doug Conley Invite on Sept. 23 at the Shalimar Golf Course in Tempe.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Golf opponents learn that Gators are tough

A young man who was helping to post scores on the leaderboard for Thursday’s (Sept. 7) Aguila Invitational looked at Xavier Prep’s low total and said, “I’ve got to get over to Xavier and learn how to play golf.’’

Sorry, son, you’re not eligible and if you were, it likely would take a Herculean effort to surpass the golfers already in place.

The numbers spoke for themselves.

Bolstered by an impressive 10-under-par 62 from sophomore Ashley Menne, the Gators finished with a victorious 11-under 277, 17 shots ahead of second place Mesa Red Mountain (294) and 19 ahead of third place Goodyear Millennium (296).

Menne was five shots better than second-place finisher Kelly Su of Scottsdale Chaparral (67). Su and Menne finished 1-2 at the recent Antigua Invitational.

“We played great today,’’ said Xavier co-coach Tui Selvaratnam. “Ashley had maybe the round of her life. As a team, we have great camaraderie, which is nice to see. And the parents really come out to support the girls. It’s a lot of fun.’’

With Menne and sophomore Millburn Ho (75) sinking mid-range putts to finish their day, a gallery of Xavier teammates and parents shouted their approval from the edge of the 18th green. Ho, who is showing continued improvement, birdied her last two holes.

“This should help give us some momentum because our schedule will continue to be busy,’’ Selvaratnam said.

There were no bunker shots allowed in the tournament due to recent monsoon damage. So the golfers were able to take a drop closest to the spot where the ball went in. Selvaratnam said that Menne only had to do that once.

The Gators next will play host to Phoenix Pinnacle on Wednesday (Sept. 13) at Phoenix Country Club, with a 3 p.m. start time.

Xavier individual scores

1 Ashley Menne (So.), 62 (-10). Tie-4 Breyana Matthews, (Fr.) 69 (-3). Tie-11 Eve Worden (Jr.), 72 (E). Tie-15 Lauren Garcia (Fr.), 74 (+2). 17 Millburn Ho (So.) 75 (+3).

Team scores

Xavier Prep 277, Mesa Red Mountain 294, Goodyear Millennium 296, Phoenix Pinnacle 308, Chandler Hamilton 308, Phoenix Horizon 322, Scottsdale Chaparral 322, Gilbert Highland 322, Phoenix Desert Vista 329, Mesa Desert Ridge 331, Scottsdale Desert Mountain 352, Gilbert Perry 354, Queen Creek Casteel 378, Phoenix Arcadia 379, Tempe Corona del Sol 380, Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor 395, Chandler High 415, Phoenix Mountain Pointe 420, Chandler Basha 459, Glendale Mountain Ridge 473.


A McKnight to remember for XCP volleyball

Xavier Prep’s volleyball team raised its record to 4-0 with a 3-0 sweep of Anthem Boulder Creek at the Activity Center on Thursday night (Sept. 7). Scores were 26-24, 25-17 and 25-20.

Sophomore outside hitter Bri McKnight had a big match for the Gators, finishing with nine kills and 17 digs. Sophomore middle blocker Jasmine Knight had eight kills, senior libero Alyna Draper had 20 digs and junior setter Shannon Shields had 27 assists.

The Gators’ next four events will be on the road.

They will travel to face Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor on Tuesday (Sept. 12) and Gilbert Perry on Wednesday (Sept. 13). Then the road takes them to Las Vegas for the high-profile Durango Classic (seven games total) on Sept. 15 and 16. They will be back in Arizona for a match at Gilbert Highland on Sept. 19.

Xavier’s next home match will be against Phoenix Desert Vista on Sept. 21.


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Here they come: Gators hit ground running

Xavier Prep’s cross-country team has some talented young runners to be sure, but there’s something to be said for the stability provided by the seniors.

Three senior athletes hoping to help the Gators hoist the Division I championship trophy on the first Saturday in November are Caroline Liddy, Caroline McClelland and Kate Straneva.

Xavier opens its season on Saturday (Sept. 9) in the Fountain Hills Invitational at Fountain Hills Park. Start time is 7:30 a.m.

With the Arizona Interscholastic Association’s relaxed practice rules, coach Dave Van Sickle and the girls were able to work more over the summer, including workouts at 5:15 a.m.

“We feel good about our team,’’ McClelland said. “I like the summer training, helps you get into a good pace of things. We are excited to start the season and see how we fit in with the rest of the state.’’

Said Van Sickle: “We are doing fantastic. We had a great summer. We are hungry and ready to go.’’

The coach likes to motivate his runners by telling them they are going to “fly under the radar,’’ meaning very few people expect them to challenge. But Xavier’s increased quality of runners across the board, age-wise, makes that a little more difficult to disguise.

To finally have a meet is a good thing, Van Sickle said, “so that everybody gets an idea of their spot, who’s doing what and what they need to work on.’’

All three seniors are involved in student council.

Liddy participates in an environmental club that promotes sustenance and limiting waste.

The Gators have cornered the market on Carolines. There are these two and a freshman, Caroline Calihan.

So if the name goes viral and should happen to wind up on running gear, who gets the copyright?

“Probably me,’’ McClelland said, laughing. “She (Liddy) goes by “Liddy’ and I am Caroline.’’

McClelland missed about a month of training while wearing a boot to help combat a case of plantar fasciitis. She thinks she will be back in full form soon.

Liddy said she hopes to get a boost from running a lot at a camp in Flagstaff.

Meanwhile, Straneva might be busiest of the three. She also writes for the X-Press newspaper and plays for the XCP tennis team in the spring.

“It’s a lot to do, but it’s super fun,’’ Straneva said. “I am involved in a lot of articles all over campus.’’

All of the runners must be disciplined to combine their sport with schoolwork.

“You have to stay focused, stick to your schedule. It’s definitely on you to make it work,’’ Straneva said.

Will life after Xavier include more running for these athletes?

McClelland hopes that things will work out to allow her to run at the collegiate level. Straneva probably will run at the club or intramural level. Liddy is not sure yet. Her decision will be based on whether she will be involved in military service. Some members of her family have served.


Xavier 2017 cross-country roster

Seniors – Abbie Conrad, Caroline Liddy, Caroline McClelland, Annika Nielson, Kate Straneva.

Juniors – Karli Baker, Karina Hawkins, Helen Innes, Arden Smith, Karina Smith, Katherine Thomas, Josie Venezia, Megan Woodbury.

Sophomores – Kayla Chavez, Kristen Keeble, Kaitlyn Lauck, Mia Olsen, Hannah Phillippi,  Gracie Valandra.

Freshmen – Sammy Braun, Caroline Calihan, Emma Chester, Elyse Gifford, Sophia Healy, Joey Hernandez Mena, Camille Merickel, Rishita Shah, Jamie Stelnik, Bethany Whitehouse.

Xavier volleyball schedule heats up

Gilbert High’s strong volleyball program lost a considerable amount of firepower in the school’s 2017 graduation.

It was imperative, then, that Xavier would be able to take advantage of its opportunity on Tuesday night (Sept. 5) when the teams met at the Activity Center.

The Gators maintained their focus with a three-game sweep, 25-15, 25-11 and 25-11.

Senior outside hitter Lanie Wagner had a solid all-around effort, as did junior setter Shannon Shields.

And Xavier’s two talented sophomores, outside hitter Bri McKnight and middle blocker Jasmine Knight, gave notice that they should be a factor for the Gators through the rest of the regular season and into the playoffs.

McKnight helped get the Gators off and running in the first game, coming up with a number of key kills.

Knight provides defensive strength at the net, but on this night became more involved in the offense.

She finished off the second game with a kill and began the third game with another power shot.

“Jaz has been blocking well, and tonight they (passers) found her for some good shots,’’ said Xavier coach Lamar-Renee Bryant.

XCP returns to action with another home match on Thursday night (Sept. 7) against Anthem Boulder Creek. The event begins at 6 p.m.

Next week, the difficulty factor increases considerably for the Gators with back-to-back road matches on back-to-back nights, Tuesday (Sept. 12) and Wednesday (Sept. 13) against Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor and Gilbert Perry, respectively.

Then comes a trip to Las Vegas for the annual Durango Classic, one of the top tournaments in the nation. Xavier has held its own there in the past and will attempt to do so again (seven tournament games) on Sept. 15-16.

To make the trip a success, Bryant said, the team must not let up.

“We have a lot of things to work on,’’ she said. “Things are going to get a lot tougher, and we have to make sure we button down.’’

Momentum continues for Gator golfers

After a big win in the Antigua Invitational over the weekend, Xavier Prep’s golf team continued its success with a decisive victory on Tuesday (Sept. 5) in a three-way match with Scottsdale Chaparral and Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor at the Phoenix Country Club.

Xavier finished with a 6-under-par 138. Chaparral shot 171 and Sandra Day O’Connor 180.

Xavier sophomore Ashley Menne earned medalist honors with a 3-under 33. Freshman Lauren Garcia was second with a 2-under 34.

Third place was shared by Chaparral’s Kelly Su and Gator freshman Breyana Matthews with a 1-under 35. Su was the medalist at the Antigua with Menne second.

Sophomore Millburn Ho and freshman Baylee Tayles each shot an even-par 36.

Additional Xavier scores:

Freshman Mary Doss 38, junior Eve Worden 39, junior Holly Otlewski 40, senior Madeline Brown 40, junior Emily Cons 43, senior Lauren Faulkner 44, sophomore Danae Bravo 45, junior Laura Lu 46 and sophomore Sydney Trout 55.

Another tournament is on the agenda for the Gators on Thursday (Sept. 7), the Aguila Invitational at the Aguila Golf Course in Laveen. The course has been the site of the state tournament the last few years, but this year, the event will be held at the Omni Tucson National. Tee time for the Aguila is approximately 11:15 a.m.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Gator golfers win tourney by 14 shots

Xavier Prep’s golf team produced another signature performance on Friday (Sept. 1) and Saturday (Sept. 2) by outplaying 17 other schools to win the annual Antigua Invitational.

After playing for several years at the McCormick Ranch Golf Course in Scottsdale, the event moved to the Whirlwind courses at the Wild Horse Pass resort in Chandler this year.

Xavier scored a 587, 11 over par, to defeat the Punahou (Hawaii) Blue team by 14 shots (601). Chandler Hamilton, Xavier’s Division I rival, finished third, 16 behind at 603.

Xavier now has won the Antigua tournament three times, finished second twice and third once.

Sophomore Ashley Menne was the Gators’ top individual, finishing second with a 69-71 for a 4-under par 140. Scottsdale Chaparral’s Kelly Su was the tournament medalist at 69-68-137.

Xavier tees off again on Tuesday (Sept. 5) with a home match against Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor at the Phoenix Country Club. Start time is 3 p.m. And another tournament looms for the Gators on Thursday (Sept. 7), the Aguila Invite at the Aguila Golf Course in Laveen.


Antigua Invitational results

Teams

Xavier Prep 587, Punahou Blue (Hawaii) 601, Chandler Hamilton 603, Grapevine (Texas) 604, Archbishop McCarthy (Fla.) 611, Phoenix Pinnacle 614, Goodyear Millennium 620, Mesa Red Mountain 623, Cave Creek Cactus Shadows 625, Coronado (Nev.) 632, Punahou Yellow (Hawaii) 635, Phoenix Horizon 676, Phoenix Desert Vista 686, Scottsdale Chaparral 698, Tucson Salpointe Catholic 713, Scottsdale Notre Dame 717, Legacy (Texas) 722, Tucson Ironwood Ridge 789.

Xavier individuals

2 Ashley Menne (So.) 69-68 – 137

T-7 Eve Worden (Jr.) 71-74 – 145

T-9 Lauren Garcia (Fr.) 73-73 – 146

T-14 Breyana Matthews (So.) 78-71 – 149

T-25 Millburn Ho (So.) 77-76 – 153

T-34 Mary Doss (Fr.) 82-75 – 157

T-37 Bailee Tayles (Fr.) 82-76 – 158

T-44 Emily Cons (Jr.) 79-81 – 160

Friday, September 1, 2017

Swimmers, divers impressive in opener

Xavier Prep’s swimming team captured eight events and the divers had three out of the top four finishers on Thursday (Aug. 31) as the Gators opened the season with an impressive 125-61 victory over Anthem Boulder Creek at the Anthem Community Center.

Two of the swimming wins came in relays, the 200-yard medley and the 200-yard freestyle.

The medley swimmers were freshmen Sydney Millane and Paola Guerra, sophomore Olivia Paliscak and senior Mary Roediger.

In the free, the four were sophomore Vica Dow, Guerra and seniors Thea Cartier and Roediger.

Individual winners were Dow in the 200-yard freestyle and 100-yard backstroke, freshman Mia Rankin in the 200-yard individual medley, Paliscak in the 100-yard butterfly, Roediger in the 100-yard freestyle and sophomore Carlie Hermann in the 400-yard freestyle.

Sophomore Maddy Sewell earned top diving honors, with juniors Aly Largay and Molly Cahill finishing second and fourth, respectively.

The Gators’ next event is on Sept. 9 with the Wolves Classic at Chandler High. Start time is 9:30 a.m.

Badminton comes home to go 4-0

A familiar place with familiar faces.

After three road matches to begin the season, Xavier Prep’s badminton team was finally back home in the Activity Center.

The Gators proved to be tough to beat against Mesa Mountain View, rolling up a 9-0 victory on Thursday (Aug. 31). The XCP junior varsity also prevailed 9-0.

”It was good to get a home match,’’ said Xavier coach Susan Contreras, whose team had previous 6-3 road wins over Mesa Red Mountain and Tempe Corona del Sol and 5-4 over Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor.

“We had a good fan base today. I think there might have been a few nerves, but we settled in and played pretty well,’’ Contreras said.

“We had talked about working on some things in practice, and this offered us a chance to continue that.’’

Senior Maddie Reinhart follows the flight of her shot in her singles match against Mesa Mountain View (Photo by Sr. Lynn Winsor).


The closest match came in doubles, where Mimi Zurbriggen and Anai Hernandez allowed Xavier to preserve its shutout with a three-set win, 17-14, 13-15, 17-14.

Zurbriggen also persevered in her singles match, holding on for 13-11 and 13-10 wins.

Xavier now goes back out for three more road matches, the first on Tuesday (Sept. 5) against Phoenix Desert Vista in Ahwatukee. That will be followed by contests at Mesa High on Sept. 7 and at Phoenix Horizon on Sept. 13.

Thursday’s result

Xavier Prep 9, Mesa Mountain View 0

Singles

Maddie Reinhart, X, def. Mountain View 11-2, 11-6.

Alexa Wolfson, X, def. Mountain View 11-2, 11-4.

Mimi Zurbriggen, X, def. Mountain View 13-11, 13-10.

Misaal Irfan, X, def. Mountain View 11-8, 11-3.

Maeve Lee, X, def. Mountain View 11-3, 11-1.

Anai Hernandez, X, def. Mountain View 11-3, 11-2.

Doubles

Reinhart-Wolfson, X, def. Mountain View 15-6, 15-0.

Irfaan-Lee, X, def. Mountain View 15-9, 15-7.

Zurbriggen-Hernandez, X, def. Mountain View 17-14, 13-15, 17-14.




XCP volleyball triumphs again

Xavier Prep’s volleyball team made it two victories in as many tries to start the season, defeating host Goodyear Millennium 3-1 on Thursday night (Aug. 31).

The Gators were challenged from the opening serve, dropping a 25-24 decision in the first game. They found their groove to win three in a row, 25-23, 25-14, 25-23.

Senior outside hitter Lanie Wagner finished with eight kills. Senior libero Alyna Draper had 16 digs and junior setter Shannon Shields had 21 assists.

Xavier returns to action on Tuesday (Sept. 5) with a home match against Gilbert High.




Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Volleyball dominates opener vs. Mtn. View

The 2017 volleyball season began for Xavier Prep on Tuesday night (Aug. 29) and there was no net letdown on the part of the Gators.

The team was near the top of its game in the season opener against Mesa Mountain View, recording a 25-8, 25-16, 25-8 sweep at the Activity Center.

“It was a great start for us,’’ said Xavier coach Lamar-Renee Bryant. “We had a lot of energy, a lot of discipline and we were focused.

“Once we settled in, we became more comfortable. We were able to execute our offense, and when we do that, we are tough to stop.’’
On the way to a sweep: winning a match 3-0 can make you smile a lot. (Photos by Sr. Lynn Winsor).
Junior Trinity Cavanaugh gave the Gators a boost in the first game with four service aces. They helped build an 8-2 lead, and the team never looked back from there.

Mountain View was a bit more competitive in the second game, creating four ties about midway through the contest.

Sophomore Bri McKnight stepped up in this one with several big kills and good service skills.

It was an encouraging sign, Bryant said, because McKnight had been nursing a sore shoulder.

In the third game, Xavier broke an early tie and went on a 7-0 run to get control.

That enabled Bryant to use most of her bench and get everyone some valuable playing time.

“Everybody played at a high level,’’ Bryant said.

Senior outside hitter Lanie Wagner (18) sends a powerful shot over Mountain View defenders.
The coach praised the play of senior outside hitter Lanie Wagner, senior libero Alyna Draper and was pleased with the ball distribution of junior setter Shannon Shields. Another player to watch closely is freshman outside hitter Serena Turner, who appears to be gaining strength and confidence at the net each time out.

Next up for the Gators is a match at Goodyear Millennium on Thursday (Aug. 31). Start time is 6 p.m.




Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Freshman swimmers playing key roles

Tadpoles rule !!

Translated, that means Xavier Prep has an extremely talented group of freshman swimmers who could help push the Gators toward a possible state championship later this fall.

“We have 12 freshman swimmers this year, and I believe that some of them will score points for us at the state meet,’’ said coach Maureen “Mo’’ Rankin. “Some might not expect that to happen, but that’s what makes it even more fun.’’

Four girls on which the spotlight is expected to shine are Paola Guerra, Jordan Herrera, Mia Rankin and Sydney Millane. They will get their first test on Thursday (Aug. 31) against Anthem Boulder Creek at the Anthem Community Center.

Of the young swimmers, Mo Rankin said, “Are a good group. They’re all club swimmers.’’

The coach said Guerra is a member of the Puerto Rican national team who should only continue to get better. Guerra’s primary events are the 100-yard breaststroke, the 50-yard freestyle or the 100-yard freestyle.

Mia Rankin is Mo Rankin’s daughter and specializes in the 500-yard freestyle and the 200-yard individual medley.

Herrera is more of a distance performer, in the 500- and 200-yard freestyles.

And Millane is focused on the 100-yard backstroke and the 200 IM.

Most of the girls also will be involved in relays.

“They really have a lot of enthusiasm,’’ coach Rankin said.

The freshmen will derive benefits from a strong group of senior co-captains – Katie McCoy, Kate Hubbard, Thea Cartier and Mary Roediger. The team will be made up of 38 girls.

“The captains are always positive. They say, “You can do this,’ ’’ Mia Rankin said.
“Everything is exciting and upbeat,’’ Guerra said. “To make a contribution to this team would be an honor.’’

Said Millane: “I think we are capable of being in the top three (in each event) at state.’’

Herrera said most of the freshmen swam in club against each other but did not know each other that well.

“That has changed already,’’ said Mia Rankin. “We haven’t been out here together for too long, but we already are bonding.’’

The freshmen participated in an intrasquad meet on Aug. 25 at the Brophy Pool. Afterward, they gathered for some fun relay events and were due to have a belly-flop contest, a part of the team tradition, according to coach Rankin.

The world of high school athletics and academics takes some getting used to, Herrera said.

“We knew it would be tough at first, but I think we are adjusting,’’ she said.

Studying, Millane said, “is not horrible. You’ve just got to be able to make sure you manage your time so you can get your work done.’’

The swimmers, young and old alike, all have the same goal.

“We want to win state,’’ Herrera said.



Xavier Prep 2017 swimming and diving roster              

Bethany Barnwell, Megan Brown, Morgan Brown, Molly Cahill, Clare Carlson.

Thea Cartier, Citlali Chimal, Talle Donley, Vica Dow, Alexandra Figueroa.       

Izzy Gomez, Paola Guerra, Kyle Gunzy, Regan Gunzy, Taylor Guthrie.

Ruby Halperin, Jordan Herrera, Carlie Herrmann, Haley Hubbard, Kate Hubbard.

Maggie Hull, Rachael Jasinski, Hannah Jemsek, Nicole Johnson, Mia Joslin.

Audrey Lamp, Aly Largay, Anna Leone, Katie McCoy, Sydney Millane.

Olivia Paliscak, Emili Palmisano, Alex Perez, Sophia Plumb, Mia Rankin.

Kylie Rodgers, Mary Roediger, Gracie Schumacher, Kelly Scott, Maddy Sewell.

Emma Sharp, Veronica Tanner, Maddie Weiland, Meghan Whitlow, Cat Worth, Maddie Wright.




Sunday, August 27, 2017

Wagner is big hitter for Xavier volleyball

After weeks of practicing and scrimmaging, the hour arrives for Xavier Prep’s volleyball team to officially begin its 2017 season. The Gators will face Mesa Mountain View on Tuesday (Aug. 29) at 6 p.m. in the Activity Center.

Xavier appears to have a good balance of experience and youth, power and blocking up front, setting and defensive strength along the back line.

One of the biggest focal points will be the power swing of 6-foot-1 senior outside hitter Lanie Wagner.

She is a co-captain in her third year as a starter, and after she completes her tour of duty with Xavier, she will move on to play at the University of Georgia.

The start of the season is coming at just the right time, Wagner said.

“I’m really excited for my senior season,’’ she said. “We are going to have a good team. All the girls are selfless, we work well together and hold each other accountable.’’

For Xavier coach Lamar-Renee Bryant, having Wagner on the floor is almost like having another coach in terms of strategy.

“She has a very good volleyball IQ,’’ Bryant said. “She is a three-year starter and is battle-tested. She is the hardest hitter in the gym. She is a quiet person, and she leads by example.’’

After enduring the recruiting process for many months, Wagner decided on the University of Georgia, but the school changed head coaches a short time later. Wagner decided to wait and see who the new coach would be before deciding whether to remain.

Georgia decided on Tom Black, a former coach at UC-San Diego and Loyola Marymount (Calif.) and assistant coach for Karch Kiraly on the U.S. National Team.

With those kinds of coaching credentials, it is not surprising that Wagner will stay put.

Before then, Wagner believes she has what it takes to help Xavier reach great heights.

“I think I have improved a lot this year between club and getting ready for the Xavier season,’’ she said. “My club coach helped me learn to coach myself. That way, she won’t have to ask me all the time and I can adjust to things on the court. That’s what I’m hoping to do for Xavier.’’

Anticipating what an opponent might do in an attempt to block her shot will be a benefit.

“You can see the block coming and hopefully go around it,’’ she said.

And the thunder will roll.

“It’s a great feeling to get a big shot,’’ she said. “I know my teammates all helped put me in that situation. I get so excited when I see those passes coming (from setter Shannon Shields and libero Alyna Draper) and follow through for the point. I think it “amps up’ the whole team.’’




Golfers show resolve, take tournament

The Division I state golf tournament will be held at the Omni Tucson National golf courses on Oct. 30 and 31. Xavier Prep entered the Nighthawk Invitational over the weekend with the intention of getting an idea of what the two layouts were all about.

If the Gators return for the state tournament and play like they did in the Nighthawk, they would have a very good chance to capture the school’s seventh title in a row and 35th overall.

Xavier scored a 38-shot victory over Chandler Hamilton (582-620) by surviving the elements (rain and lightning) at 3 p.m. on both Friday (Aug. 25) and Saturday (Aug. 26) that halted play for about 90 minutes each day. And don’t forget the triple-digit temperatures.

“Both courses (the Sonoran and the Catalina) are beautiful,’’ said Xavier co-coach Sr. Lynn Winsor.

“Some of our girls had played the Catalina before in junior golf tournaments, and that is kind of flat. But the Sonoran (which was used the first day) is up and down, up and down. One of the holes, the 15th, seems like it’s almost vertical and you wonder how anybody can make it up there.

“But our girls did a great job both days. Tui (Selvaratnam, co-coach) and I are so proud of them.’’

Sophomore Ashley Menne was the medalist with an 8-under-par 135 (67-68), nine shots ahead of second-place finisher Maddie Loux of Goodyear Millennium (144).

Sophomore Millburn Ho had a great two days, shooting a 73 in both rounds for a third-place finish. Junior Eve Worden was tied for sixth at 150, freshman Lauren Garcia was tied for 15th at 156. Sophomore Breyana Matthews was tied for 18th at 157. Freshman Mary Beth Doss, who played as an extra, shot a 72 the first day and 81 the second for a 153.

Xavier’s next match is on Wednesday (Aug. 30) against Glendale Mountain Ridge at the Arrowhead Legend course in Glendale.

The Gators will be in another high-quality tournament next weekend, this time the Antigua Invitational, on Friday (Sept. 1) and Saturday (Sept. 2). The event had been played in the recent past at the McCormick Ranch Golf Club in Scottsdale but this year has been moved to the Whirlwind Golf Club at the Wild Horse Pass resort in Chandler, to the west of Interstate 10. Tee times are 7:30 a.m. both days.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Badminton Gators are road warriors

Playing on the road doesn’t appear to be affecting Xavier Prep’s badminton team much in the early stages of the 2017 season.

The Gators came away with their second road triumph in as many days on Thursday (Aug. 24), 6-3 over Tempe Corona del Sol. Xavier had defeated Mesa Red Mountain by the same score on Wednesday (Aug. 23).

Four of the team’s next five matches also are away from home.

“Yesterday (Wednesday), there were a lot of nerves, but we managed to survive,’’ said Xavier coach Susan Contreras. “Today (Thursday), we walked into the gym knowing we were going to have a tougher match on our hands.

“It definitely helped to have that first match on Wednesday. We seemed to come in here more prepared. We didn’t let some of the little things bother us.’’

The Gators won five of six singles matches and one of the three doubles contests.

Two of the three singles matches were stretched to three games.

Senior Maddie Reinhart dropped the first game to her Corona del Sol opponent, 11-7, but came back for a pair of 11-9 wins. Junior Misaal Irfan won her first game 11-2. She fell in the second game 11-7 and returned in the third for a decisive 11-1 win.

“What Maddie did was a key for us after she lost that first one,’’ Contreras said. “She was able to regain her focus and then maintained it.’’

Senior Alexa Wolfson also had a productive afternoon with an 11-5, 11-1 singles win and then teamed with Reinhart for a 15-13, 15-4 win in doubles.

Xavier’s next match is Tuesday (Aug. 29) at Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor in the north Valley.

Xavier Prep 6, Tempe Corona del Sol 3
Singles

Maddie Reinhart, X, def. Corona del Sol 3-11, 11-9, 11-9
Alexa Wolfson, X, def. Corona del Sol 11-5, 11-1
Mimi Zurbriggen, X, lost to Corona del Sol 5-11, 10-13
Misaal Irfan, X, def. Corona del Sol 11-2, 7-11, 11-1
Maeve Lee, X, def. Corona del Sol 11-6, 11-2
Anai Hernandez, X, def. Corona del Sol 11-7, 11-4

Doubles
Reinhart-Wolfson, X, def. Corona del Sol 15-13, 15-4
Zurbriggen-Irfaan, X. lost to Corona del Sol, 3-15, 2-15
Lee-Hernandez, X, lost to Corona del Sol 12-15, 12-15