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, October 13, 2021

Xavier badminton looking over the edge

 It is down to the nitty-gritty for Xavier Prep’s badminton team.

If the Gators hope to reach the Division I state tournament, they likely will have to win their final two matches of the regular season, on Wednesday (Oct. 13) in a Senior Day encounter with Chandler Basha and the finale at Chandler High on Thursday (Oct. 14).

In the most recent Arizona Interscholastic Association power points rankings on Wednesday, XCP (7-9-1) was 16th. The tournament field consists of the top 16 teams.

On Tuesday (Oct. 12), Xavier fell to visiting Tempe Corona del Sol 8-1, the Gators’ third straight setback.

Xavier played four three-set games against Corona (7-4), which now is seventh in the rankings.

Carrying the lone victorious torch for the Gators was rising freshman player Maggie Henry, who defeated the Aztecs’ Abby Rugg, 21-17, 17-21, 21-18.

Tuesday’s result

Corona del Sol 8, Xavier Prep 1


Merilyn Li, CDS, def. Jasmine Leyva, X, 21-6, 21-11; Megan Kirchardt, CDS, def. Gigi Riviere, X, 17-21, 21-13, 21-9; Kayla McDonald, CDS, def. Sophia Bonilla, X, 21-11, 21-18; Adithi Muruganandam, CDS, def. Riley Dowdall, X, 20-22, 21-18, 21-16; Allie Pequeno, CDS, def. Lexi Garman, X, 18-21, 22-20, 21-17; Maggie Henry, X, def. Abby Rugg, CDS, 21-17, 17-21, 21-18.


Kirchardt-McDonald, CDS, def. Riviere-Leyva, X, 9-21, 21-19, 21-15; Muruganandam-Li, CDS, def. Dowdall-Bonilla, X, 21-19, 21-12; Rugg-Pequeno, CDS, def. Henry-Garman, 21-19, 21-11.

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