LEXINGTON Three Northeastern Kentucky singles players survived the first day of the state tennis tournament on Thursday at two different sites — Top Seed Tennis Club and the University of Kentucky’s Boone/Downing Tennis Center.
Ashland’s Parker Clarke, Morgan County’s Ashton Whitt and Greenup County’s Madison Hill are still alive.
Clarke defeated Owensboro freshman Dylan Mather, 6-2, 6-1, in the opening round. In the Round of 32, Clarke eliminated Daviess County sophomore George Hulse, 6-1, 6-2. The Ashland senior and 16th Region singles champion will face Covington Latin sophomore Kazu Watanabe in the Sweet 16 this morning at UK. If he prevails, No. 3 seed Michael Chou (Trinity) may await later today. Clarke is a 5-seed.
Also a No. 5 in boys singles, Whitt advanced past Whitley County’s Reece Halcomb, 6-1, 6-1, and took down Central Hardin freshman Thor Newsome, 6-0, 6-0. Whitt will encounter Campbell County’s Anderson McDowell today at 9:15 a.m. DuPont Manual’s Paul Reynolds is still alive in the same bracket as Whitt. They could collide in today’s quarterfinals.
In girls singles, Hill remains in the tournament. She’ll meet No. 5 seed Amanda Miller (Lexington Catholic) in the Round of 16 this morning at 8. Hill dominated Knott County Central’s Hannah Craft and Leanna Osborne (Knox Central) on Thursday. Hill dropped only one out of 25 games in two matches.
Lawrence County’s Katelyn Pauley got past Owensboro Catholic’s Sarah Young, who withdrew due to injury, but fell to North Oldham’s Kate Beavin in the second round.
Ashland’s Reed Daniel and Ethan Sellars won their first match over Rowan County’s Luke Burrows and Jordan Justice. The Tomcats duo fell short in the Round of 32. The same happened to Morgan County’s McKenzie Daniel and Jacob Elam.
Another Ashland duo — Justin Lucas and Mac Meek — moved on to the second round by knocking off Lawrence County’s Brock Kessinger and S.J. Lycans. Lucas and Meek were ousted by the North Oldham tandem of Grant Adelson and Jordan Henley.
Ashland girls partners Emma Johnson and Abby Meek reigned victorious in their first-round duel with Hopkinsville’s Sophie Maddux and Skylar Ray. Johnson and Meek lost in the Round of 32 to the top-seeded team from DuPont Manual (Anna Littlefield and Nejia Zukic), 6-1, 6-2.
Rose Hill’s Delaynee and Bellamee Sparks toppled Mercy’s Kennady Krieger and Sophie Stallings in their opener. Elizabethtown’s Ann Bell and Abby Henson trumped the Lady Royals in the Round of 32.
Morgan County’s Emily Hammonds and Kennedy Trusty cruised past Pendleton County’s duo of Baleigh Tackett and Sadie Wright. Hammonds and Trusty fell to Conner’s Grace Eberhard and Aly Elleman in the second round.