The Tiger tennis team ended its season in a district loss to Kickapoo at Gillenwaters Tennis Complex in Springfield Tuesday. Kickapoo swept three doubles matches, then finished off the Tigers with two singles wins for a 5-0 win.
“Although we could have played a little better, I thought we competed well. That’s a good Kickapoo team and a lot of our struggles came from them consistently putting us in difficult positions,” said coach David Smashey.
The loss is the last time the Tigers will compete as a team this year, although Chase Elder and Jon Cole will compete at the state tournament in doubles next week.
“It’s tough to walk off the court knowing that’s your last match together as a group, and especially so for the seniors who had played their last high school match,” Smashey said.
Republic finished the season at 11-4 overall and tied for third in the Central Ozark Conference. Smashey said he and assistant coach Logan Elder saw a lot of progress.
“From the beginning, Coach Elder and I thought this was a team that would get better over the course of the season, but they really exceeded our expectations. Every one of our guys got better as both singles and doubles players, but more importantly, we became a competitive and cohesive team,” Smashey said.
The state doubles tennis tournament will be played May 18-19 at Cooper Tennis Center in Springfield.
1 doubles Elder/Carpenter L 4-8
2 doubles Cole/Collyott L 6-8
3 doubles Long/Choate L 4-8
1 singles Elder L 0-6, 1-6
2 singles Carpenter 3-6, unfinished
3 singles Cole L 0-6, 3-6
4 singles Collyott 5-7, unfinished
5 singles Long 6-3, unfinished
6 singles Hardcastle 5-7, unfinished