The 10U Cheetahs, 14U Bobcats, and 18U Bears all had successful summer tennis seasons and qualified for the opportunity to battle for the title of Oklahoma Junior Team Tennis State Champion. It was an exciting and exhausting two days in Tulsa for the three squads this past Tuesday and Wednesday, July 26-27. At the end of the first day of competition the Cheetahs were leading the pack by two games, the Bobcats were trailing the first place Southern Hills team by five games, and the 18U Bears were twelve games behind the leader.
Wednesdays competition began at 7 am with our youngest team, the 10U Cheetahs, taking the court against a strong Edmond Center Court team. Each of our kids battled for every point and when the final match ended Edmond Center Court had narrowly won the competition. Our kids were disappointed since they were only two games away from being crowned State Champion, but they left the LaFortune Park Tennis Center hungry to make it back for a shot to win the title next summer. Congratulations to Anna Reineke, Isabel and Melody Chen, Aiden Hays, Finley Morris, and Jenevieve Joyce on a great tournament!
At 9 am both of our older teams, the 14U Bobcats and the 18U Bears took the court. Both teams were trailing the first place teams going into the competition, but after four of the five matches played it was clear that the State Champion would be determined on the Mixed Doubles court, the final match of the tournament. The crowds gathered to watch the teams battle. When the competition concluded the 14U Bobcats had beaten Southern Hills team by two games to win the title of State Champion! Congratulations to Gray Dillon, Paul Cai, Braver Reineke, Jayla Harris, Luke Solomon, and Ezra and Jude Morris on their outstanding play throughout the tournament!
The 18U Bears began the final day of competition twelve games out of first place, but they were determined to stay focused, fight for each point, and not be distracted by the deficit. Noah Gou, Tokara Henderson, John Paul and Parker Dillon, Raleigh Miller, Levi Solomon, and Alma and Andrea Mendoza all played exceptionally well on Tuesday. Each of the kids knew that to win the championship they would have to raise their level of play if they were going to beat the The Greens who were leading by twelve. Rising to the challenge is exactly what each of the players did as they made up the twelve game deficit to win the tournament by one game…one game! Congratulations on bringing home the 18U JTT State Championship!
One of the important lessons our coaches emphasize over and over again with our kids is: “Every game counts! There’s no time to get your head down because you lost a game. You’ve got to refocus and win the next one because the team is counting on you.” Each of the three teams experienced the importance of every single game of competition. We are so proud of our kids! The future is bright for the BCCTA JTT future.