The Ankeny Centennial boys’ tennis team got three-set victories from Will Blevins and Joel Unick, but it wasn’t enough as the Jaguars dropped a 5-3 decision to Waukee in the quarterfinals of the Class 2A state team tournament on Saturday.
Waukee took a 4-2 lead out of singles, then sealed the victory by winning the No. 2 doubles match. The Jaguars finished with a 9-3 record.
“We knew we needed to win at least three singles, but we lost a couple of close ones,” said Centennial coach Tami Lewton. “We knew that Waukee’s doubles teams were really good, and they were just too much for our 2 doubles.”
Centennial also got a win from the No. 3 doubles team of Unick and Samson Densmore. The Jaguars were looking to avenge a 7-4 loss at Waukee earlier this month, but the Warriors proved to be too strong.
Centennial will now focus on the upcoming individual state tournament, which is slated for Friday and Saturday in Cedar Rapids. Blevins has qualified in singles, while Sam Marold and Ryan Lofgren advanced in doubles.
“I’m so proud of these guys and the way we competed all season,” Lewton said. “We have been a very clutch team and pulled out almost every close match with the exception of this one. Waukee has a really good team and consistently finishes in the top four. We just didn’t have enough to pick them off.
“Hopefully, this sets some fire in our guys to work even harder this year and accomplish what we almost accomplished this year,” she added.
Here are the match-by-match results:
Waukee 5, Centennial 3
Singles–Blevins (AC) beat Burmeister, 2-6, 6-1, 6-1; Ecklund (W) beat Marold, 6-0, 6-2; Weyers (W) beat Lofgren, 6-4, 6-1; Fouts (W) beat Densmore, 7-5, 7-6 (7); Karras (W) beat Peterson, 6-1, 6-3; J. Unick (AC) beat Danna, 3-6, 7-5, 6-3.
Doubles–Marold/Lofgren (AC) vs. Ecklund/Weyers, 1-6, 6-3, DNF; Burmeister/Fouts (W) beat Blevins/Cole, 6-4, 6-2; Densmore/J. Unick (AC) beat Karras/Severson, 6-1, 6-0.