DON KETCHUM is a native of Phoenix. He was a sportswriter for The Arizona Republic/The Phoenix Gazette for nearly four 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, the web site of the Arizona Interscholastic Association.

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


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.


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

Irfan-Lee 15-5, 15-5.

Hernandez-Dines 15-0, 15-3.

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