Several Anna Coyotes turned in fine performances at the Leonard Tennis Invitational held March 9-11 at the Anna Sports Complex. Leading the way was sophomore Rowdy Lairson, who won his first-ever boys singles tournament, defeating Farmersville’s top player, Troupe Shelton, 8-4, in the semi-finals before holding off Kenneth Slack of Whitewright with a 7-1 tiebreaker in the finals. In the opening two rounds, Lairson knocked off opponents from Ector and Prairieland.
“In the (Whitewright) tiebreaker, Rowdy seemed to calm himself and just handled his nerves better than his opponent,” Anna head coach Vince Sharp said.
In girls singles, sophomore Mary Beth Geren finished third after advancing to the semi-finals with 8-1 wins over Leonard and Prairieland. Her Prairieland opponent was a regional-qualifier a year ago.
“Mary Beth had one of the best matches I have seen her play,” Sharp said. “She was so consistent with her shots. Her opponent didn’t have a chance.”
In the semis, Geren’s opponent was Mary Salazar of Ector, whom she’d beaten two weeks ago for her first singles medal. This time Salazar was a touch better, taking an 8-5 win.
Other strong Coyote performances included Angel Dube and Jesus Garrido, who advanced to the mixed-doubles quarterfinals with an 8-0 win over Trenton before dropping a tiebreaker to Van Alstyne. Jonah Parker and Simon Geren lost early in the main draw, but bounced back with an 8-5 win over Prairieland in the first round of consolation before falling to Lone Oak.
In boys doubles, Coyotes Johnny Alvarado and Zack Eade topped Howe, 8-3, in the first round then thumped Venus, 8-0, before losing, 8-6, to Leonard in the quarterfinals.
In other Lady Coyotes’ action, Sydney Jones and Jewel Canty advanced to the semifinals and finished fourth after wins over Tioga and Van Alstyne. Aly Fudge and Zoe Stumbaugh were defeated in the first round, but went on to win girls-doubles consolation medals, topping Prairieland, 8-1, in the consolation final. Nalyn Koenig and Emily McDonald won their first consolation match, 8-0 over Venus, before falling in the next round.