FARMINGTON – The Farmington girls tennis team, and the FHS and Piedra Vista boys teams are still alive at the 5A state tournament after advancing out of the quarterfinals Friday in Albuquerque.
The No. 3 Farmington boys picked up an 8-1 over No. 6 Santa Teresa, but it was far from an easy victory.
The two teams played their doubles matches first. All three of the matches went three sets, and two of them went to tiebreakers.
“It wasn’t a cruise. It was really close,” FHS boys coach Larry Larson said. “We won all three of them, but they were all extremely close. At one moment, I thought we were going to lose all three, then the next, I thought we were going to win all three, then I didn’t have any clue. It was really exciting.”
The Scorps will play No. 2 Los Alamos in the semifinals at 11 a.m. today. Larson said he thinks the close matches against Santa Teresa will give the Scorps a boost of confidence and momentum heading into the semis.
The No. 5 Panthers punched their ticket to the semifinals with a 7-2 win over No. 4 Lovington in a tightly contested team match. It was so close that five matches went to three sets, with PV taking four of the five.
"We were dealing with probably between 20-40 mile an hour winds the whole time," PV coach Jenny Baker said. "So we had to adjust, not only in our physical game but our mental game, too, and they pulled through on that."
Kaden Weisheisit came through with a key win at No. 6 singles for PV and did so despite dropping the first set. The Panthers play No. 1 Albuquerque Academy at 11 a.m. today.
The No. 3 Farmington girls, who are the defending 5A champions, knocked off No. 6 St. Pius X 8-1, setting up a semifinal matchup with No. 2 Los Alamos at 11 a.m. today.
“The girls looked really steady. It was good to get them to play this match because Pius is competitive, and it should get them ready for Los Alamos,” FHS girls head coach Pat McGrath said.
McGrath said it was good to see the doubles team of Riley Coleman and Hailie Nygren bounce back with a win after losing in the quarterfinals of the individual tournament on Thursday.
With the Los Alamos match looming, McGrath said one of the keys for the Lady Scorps will be remaining mentally strong during the matches.
“We’ve talked it over all year, and they’re going to have to have the mindset that the matches are going to go two hours,” he said. “Nothing is going to be easy. They have to be willing to fight for every point, and they understand that they’re going to be out there for a long, long time.”
The fifth-seeded Lady Panthers fell 6-3 to No. 4 Centennial.
Sarah Dekay won PV's only singles match. The Lady Panthers were victorious in the No. 1 and No. 2 doubles matches.
Karl Schneider is the sports editor for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4648.
Jake Newby covers sports for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577.