RUSSELLVILLE — The Bryant High School tennis team started the 2018 season with a two-day tournament hosted by Arkansas Tech University. On Friday, Aug. 10, the boys played Fort Smith Southside and the girls took on Rogers Heritage. On Saturday, both played Fort Smith Northside.
Senior Blake Cunningham and junior Jalen Dinstbier each won singles matches on Friday. At number one singles, Cunningham prevailed 8-0. Dinstbier earned an 8-2 win at number five singles. Freshman Carson Matson battled to a draw only to lose in the tiebreaker.
Meanwhile, sophomore Elaine Qualls won one of the few singles matches that got played, 8-3, at number 3 singles. Abbie Johnson fell behind 0-7 then gave way as she got overheated.
The Lady Hornets were awarded forfeits when Heritage failed to finish the match. Kate Keith at number two, Jayla Osborne at number five and Megan Sisco at number six were the beneficiaries.
In another singles match that did get played, Hannah Henderson lost at number four, 1-8.
For the boys, Broc Ingold fell at number two singles, 2-8. Nick Skaivo lost at number four, 1-8, and David Goshien lost at number six singles, 4-8.
Rogers Heritage swept the girls doubles. Qualls and Henderson lost 0-8; Hope Hartz and Johnson fell 2-8; and Angelly Valentin and Keith battled but absorbed a 6-8 loss.
Likewise, the boys’ doubles teams for Bryant struggled. At number one, Donte Baker and Codi Kirby lost 2-8; at number two, Grant Moore and Max Buck fell 0-8; and, at number three, Aaron Garcia and Ethan Blackford dropped an 0-8 decision.
On Saturday, Johnson and Keith each won singles matches at the top two spots. Qualls, Henderson, Osborne and Hartz each lost their singles matches.
In doubles, Johnson teamed with Keith and fell 5-8. Qualls and Henderson absorbed a 1-8 loss at number two; and Osborne and Valentin came up short, 1-8.
The boys were swept. Cunningham fell 3-8 while Ingold lost 2-8. Buck, Blackford and Moore each went down 0-8. A number six match involving Garcia was not completed.
At doubles, Matson and Dinstbier absorbed a hard-fought 4-8 decision while Baker and Kirby lost 0-8 and Skaivo and David Goshien fell 1-8.
The tennis team is set for a showcase at the Otter Creek courts this Saturday. They’ll compete against White Hall at Pine Bluff Country Club on Thursday, Aug. 23.