Juneau-Douglas High School’s William Smoker and Erica Hurtte combined to win five divisions of the four-day Southeast Regional Tennis Championships hosted by JRC/The Alaska Club.
Smoker and Hurtte were the last players standing in the singles, doubles and mixed doubles brackets and together won 11 matches in the intersquad competition with several dozen of their teammates.
Smoker and River Reyes-Boyer won the boys doubles title on Saturday night before disjoining and playing the singles final on Sunday afternoon. By that time, Smoker and Hurtte won the mixed doubles championship 6-1, 6-1, over Reyes-Boyer and Olivia Moore. JDHS coach Kurt Dzinich said the boys final was “an excellent battle.” Smoker won 6-4, 6-1.
“William had a fantastic tournament,” Dzinich said by phone on Tuesday. “He had an excellent performance across the disciplines and we’re hoping he can carry some momentum into the state tournament.”
In addition to the singles, doubles and mixed divisions, the tournament also featured a developmental girls singles and doubles bracket. Molly Minick won the singles bracket while Nicole Mannix and Grace Newman won the doubles bracket.
“All the kids played a huge amount of matches and it’s a great opportunity for them to improve their match play instead of just practice,” Dzinich said.
The ASAA/First National Bank Alaska Tennis State Championships are next Friday and Saturday at the Alaska Club East in Anchorage. 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).
Smoker and Hurtte will lead a team of eight to the tournament this year. Hurtte will look to return to the girls singles state championship match for the third consecutive year while Smoker and Reyes-Boyer will look to be a threat in doubles. The remaining state team includes: Jaymie Collman (mixed doubles), Sahil Bathija (mixed doubles), Wolf Dostal (boys singles), Olivia Moore (girls doubles) and Adelie McMillan (girls doubles).
“The state team develops throughout the season and regions is the final piece in determining who the eight are,” Dzinich said.
The state tournament also features 16 players from Region III (Mat-Su Valley), 16 from Region VI (Fairbanks) and 32 from Region IV (Anchorage).