JDHS tennis given tough state draws

Tournament begins on Saturday in Anchorage

The Alaska School Activities Association released the tennis state championship brackets Monday.

Juneau-Douglas High School senior Erica Hurtte nabbed the No. 2 seed in the girls singles bracket, setting up a likely finals rematch with South Anchorage’s Christine Hemry, a three-time state champion. Hurtte will face Kodiak’s Illa Abad on Friday at 10:15 a.m. in the first round at the Alaska Club East in Anchorage. ASAA seeds only the top-two players or teams in each of the brackets. The other seven players or teams are paired via a random draw.

JDHS coach Kurt Dzinich is confident Hurtte will be able to get back to the finals against Hemry on Saturday afternoon.

“There is an excellent chance that the two of them will meet in the final for the third straight year,” he said.

None of the remaining seven JDHS players were selected as the No. 1 or No. 2 seeds. Boys singles senior Wolf Dostal and mixed doubles pair Sahil Bathija and Jaymie Collman will have to square off against either Nos. 1 and 2 seeds though.

Dostal plays No. 1 David Columbus of East Anchorage on Friday at 9 a.m. Bathija and Collman take on the No. 2 Peyton and Walker Brown of South Anchorage later in the day at 1:30 p.m.

The doubles teams of William Smoker and River Reyes-Boyer and Adelie McMillan and Olivia Moore play in non-seeded first-round matches against West Anchorage teams.

“This last two weeks (of practice) is just for the state team,” Dzinich said. “So we’re working away on all aspects of the game, whether that’s shots or strategy or endurance or anything else that comes into play.”

JDHS has appeared in every state tournament since the inaugural competition in 2007. The Crimson Bears have won state championships in girls singles (2007), mixed doubles (2008, 2009, 2016) and girls doubles (2015) and finished as high as second in team standings (2016).

• Contact sports reporter Nolin Ainsworth at 523-2272 or nainsworth@juneauempire.com.

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