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.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

"One round at a time' for XCP tennis

Xavier Prep’s approach in the Division I state team tennis tournament is simple.

“One round at a time, one team at a time,’’ said Gators coach Laurie Martin.

The second-seeded Gators took care of the first one on Tuesday (April 23) with a 5-0 win over visiting 15th-seeded Surprise Shadow Ridge to highlight Senior Day.

With the individual singles and doubles brackets looming on Friday (April 26) and Saturday (April 27), the team portion of the tournament won’t resume until April 30. That is when the Gators will host a quarterfinal match against seventh-seeded Phoenix Horizon.

Xavier (15-0) played Horizon on March 14 at XCP and won 8-1.

Xavier did not need to dip into doubles play against Shadow Ridge, and got singles victories from seeds 2 through 6.

They were No. 2 Erica Stutz (6-1, 6-0), No. 3 Ryan Kershner (6-0, 6-2), No. 4 Lorelei Glidden (6-0, 6-0), No. 5 Kate Stegman (6-1, 6-0), and No. 6 Emilia Chrostowski (6-0, 6-0). No. 1 player Tristanne Dechoux was still playing her contest when the outcome of the match had been decided, so she did not need to finish.

Martin said some of her players practiced over the recent spring break while others chose to relax.

“So we came out today, looked good and did what we needed to do. Now it’s on to the next phase,’’ she said.

Note -- Dechoux will be the No. 2 seed in singles when individual play begins on Friday at Gene Autry Park in east Mesa (McKellips near Greenfield). Stutz and Kershner will be the third-seeded doubles team.

The Xavier players will receive a first-round bye. If they win their second-round matches, they would advance to Saturday’s action, which will feature quarterfinal and semifinal rounds at the Paseo Racquet Center in Glendale (63rd Ave. and Thunderbird).

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