Tennis team compete well at invitational
     2013-09-23      By Jerry Purvis    news@geringcitizen.com
Photos by Lisa Betz/Gering Citizen Gering senior Brian Doll hits a return volley during a recent #1 singles contest against Cheyenne South at Gering. Doll went 1-4 in North Platte on Saturday.  
Both Gering and Scottsbluff boys’ tennis team went up against a strong field of competition last Saturday at the North Platte Invitational, but both coaches said their teams “competed well.”

The field of 10 teams included three larger Class A schools and seven strong Class B schools. Kearney took first place, followed by Grand Island and Lexington. Gering placed ninth and Scottsbluff closed out the field of 10.

“The boys played pretty well against some really tough competition,” said Gering coach Matt Palomo. “All of them won at least one match.”

In #1 singles, Brian Doll went 1-4 and Jason Doll went 1-4 in #2 singles. The #1 doubles team of Vince Moreno and Anthony Ramirez also went 1-4. In #2 doubles, the team of Noah Miller and Alex Lupher went 2-3.

“It was good for the boys,” Palomo said. “They just keep working on going forward toward the state tournament.”

Scottsbluff coach Ron Swank said his squad also did well against some strong competition. Sean Mercer-Smith went 2-3 in #1 singles to place seventh. Eric Olsen got ninth place in #3 singles by going 1-4. Scottsbluff’s #2 doubles team of Brad Divan and Giovanni Aldrigo had three close matches, going 8-6, 9-7 and 8-6. The #1 doubles team of Owen Parra and Jackson Frank lost a close 9-7 match to Hastings.

Gering also hosted a triangular on Tuesday for the JV squads, which included Scottsbluff and Alliance. Scottsbluff won both of those duals, beating Alliance 6-3 and Gering 9-0. Palomo said his squad played well, but Scottsbluff was too strong that afternoon.

Scottsbluff next splits its squad on Thursday by sending the JV team to Torrington for a 4 p.m. match.

Coach Swank said he decided to split the squads after Lexington moved its invitational up a day to Friday, Sept. 20. The Scottsbluff varsity will compete there.

As for sending the JV squad to Torrington, Swank said “This will give our younger players some more varsity experience. They may not win the match, but this group will compete. That is all I ask of them.”

Coach Palomo’s Gering varsity will also be at the Lexington Invite. Their competition will include some of the same teams they’ll see at the state tournament. Then on Sept 24, Gering will be in Torrington for both varsity and JV matches.

The tennis season wraps up Oct. 1 with a triangular meet at Alliance, which will include Gering and Scottsbluff. The state tournament is Oct. 17 and 18.

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