Wesson tennis wraps up 2017 season

Published 10:10 pm Friday, May 12, 2017

Wesson’s tennis team sent all 12 starters to the MHSAA State Championships in Oxford, where they all shined on the court for the school.

Led by newly-crowned 3A boys’ singles state champion Erich Fischer, nearly all of the Cobras advanced past the first round of competition.

In girls’ singles, senior Copiah-Lincoln Community College signee Maya Granger routed Ruleville’s Miracle Williams 6-1, 6-0 to advance to the quarterfinals. There, she faced a tough competitor in Raleigh’s Kimberly Stockman. Granger pushed Stockman to a second-set tiebreaker, but lost the match 3-6, 6-7 (8-10). 

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In boys’ doubles, the Cobras had two duos earn spots in the tournament. Junior Skyler Rasberry and sophomore Drew Hulon had a really tough draw in the first round of all the Cobras, facing St. Patrick’s Alexander Gioe and Jackson Ward. Although they put up a tough fight, Rasberry and Hulon fell to the Irish 2-6 4-6. Rasberry and Hulon were undefeated heading into the tournament.

The Wesson boys’ doubles team of senior Hinds commit Ray Drane and junior Reid Crow entered the tournament undefeated in 13 matches. They continued that streak through the first round by dominating the Forest High School duo of Jacobi Braggs and Jalyn Rowell 6-0, 6-2. In the worst seeding possible that paired the two top boys’ doubles teams in the state in the quarterfinals, the Cobras pair had to face St. Patrick’s best doubles team of Evan Chubb and Luke Seicshnaydre. Although Drane and Crow fought hard, they lost to the eventual State Champions 1-6, 3-6, taking more games from the St. Patrick’s team than any other opponents in the next two rounds.

In girls’ doubles, Wesson had two more pairs earn their places in the competition. The Wesson duo of junior Morgan Wesley and sophomore Shaylin Green faced East Side High’s Myriah Howard and Olecia James in the first round, defeating them 6-1, 6-4.

In the quarterfinals, the Wesson pair faced a tough opponent in St. Andrews’ Lily Flowers and Olivia Lantrip, a team that had defeated Wesley and Green 6-4, 6-4 the previous week in the team playoffs. The Cobras won the first set in a close 7-5 score before dropping the second set 4-6.

In the deciding third set, the duo from Wesson sealed the victory with a 6-4 score, dropping the Saints and advancing to the state semifinals.

In the round of four, the Cobras faced the duo of Sarrah Der-Ballout and Erin Owens from the Mississippi School for Math and Science. Although Wesley and Green played well, they were defeated by a score of 4-6, 2-6 to finish third in the state for 3A girls’ doubles.

In other girls’ doubles action, juniors Kimberly San and Amber Brinson faced a tough opponent in South Pontotoc’s Haylee Finley and Addi Smith. After dropping the first set 2-6, the Cobras fought back to claim the second set 6-3 to force a deciding third set. In the end, the girls from South Pontotoc were too hard to overcome as San and Brinson lost the final set 2-6.

In mixed doubles, the Wesson pair of seniors Mary Beth Munn and Logan Channell faced New Site’s Maycee Chambers and Walker Mooreland in the first round of the competition. The Cobras proved too much for their opponents and won easily 6-3, 6-1.

In the second round, the Cobra duo were matched against Mooreville’s Sianna Downs and Macaleb Lovvorn. Once again, the Cobras proved too good and won easily 6-3, 6-1.

In the semifinals, the Cobras met St. Patrick’s Meg Weatherly and Logan Ward to compete for a spot in the finals. Ultimately, the Irish team won the victory over Munn and Channell 6-1, 6-2. The St. Patrick pair went on to win the state championship in Mixed Doubles, and the Cobras finished tied for third in the state.

“Our entire team worked so hard this year, and it was really wonderful to see them achieve results that reflected that hard work,” Wesson head coach Rod Martin said. “We have some really great seniors who have led this team to great heights, and our juniors and sophomores have really stepped up to match that leadership. To have a state champion in Erich, two third place finishes in mixed doubles and girls doubles, two fifth place finishes in doubles and girls singles, and two eighth place finishes in girls doubles and boys doubles is really just outstanding.”