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 27, 2022

Gators defeat improved Chandler in tennis opener

 State tournament brackets are designed to have the higher seeds play the lower ones in the opening rounds, therefore allowing the higher-ranked teams to relax a bit, at least in theory.

But sometimes that plan can collapse like a stack of cards and the opposite can happen.

Xavier Prep tennis coach Laurie Martin certainly did not want her team to get caught in an upset when the perennial powerhouse, second-seeded Gators faced visiting No. 15 Chandler High on Tuesday (April 26) in a Division I first-round match at Xavier’s Stark Tennis Center.

Xavier had defeated Chandler 7-2 earlier in the season, and Martin could see that the Wolves were showing signs of being a program on the rise. Xavier finished the regular season at 14-1 while Chandler was 10-5.

So the Gators maintained their focus and picked up a 5-0 victory. The next round will not be until May 3, due to the startup on state singles and doubles play this weekend. Xavier will host No. 10 seed Tucson Rincon/University.

“Chandler now has a quality team, and their coach (Abe Olivas) has developed a good, sound program. It’s great to see a team come back like that,’’ Martin said.

Division I state tennis

First round

Tuesday, at XCP Stark Tennis Center

Xavier Prep 5, Chandler High 0


Danielle Dyer, X, def. Hannah Truong, C; Victoria Chrostowski, X, def. Sophie Ogles, C; Julia Chrostowski, X, def. Shruthi Sadhasivam, C; Megan Wheeling, x, def. Maddie Moran, C; Belani Soto, X, def. Emily Chao, C.

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