The Logan Middle School tennis team finished off a successful season on October 22, playing in the Mid-Valley Conference Tournament at Watt Powell Park in Charleston.
Coach Bryan Kidd and his players are all sad the season has come to an end.
“This season pretty much began back in June with our three weeks of practice that we are allowed out of season with our players,” he said. “In July, we had our USTA tennis league. Then, from August to the end of October we had our season. In all, we have been playing and training for around five months. Even though many of us are ready to take a break, we all are going to miss it because of all of the fun and success we have had.”
This year was the first time in three years the LMS boys team had enough players to compete and to win a match.
The boys finished the regular season 2-12 as a team but it was their performance at the MVAC tournament that really turned heads.
Logan came into the tournament as decisive underdogs but they received a good draw.
All of their matchups were against Ripley, a team they narrowly lost to 4-3 in both regular season encounters.
The No. 1 seed, Casey Walsh, fell in the quarterfinals 8-1 to Ripley.
Logan’s No. 2 seed, Chase Ooten, won 8-3 over Ripley to advance to the conference semis before falling to Hurricane.
Tyler Ball, the third seed, won 8-2 over Ripley before losing to Winfield in the semifinals.
No. 4 seed Adam Heflin fell ill the day of the tournament and was forced to forfeit his singles and doubles match.
The boys were able to sneak ahead of several teams that had beaten them in the regular season to finish fourth in the conference.
Kidd said he was very proud of his boys team.
“I honestly couldn’t believe how well they were playing,” he said. “After our regular season record, few would have thought we could finish that high in the conference. If Adam had been able to play, I honestly think we would have finished third. I’m so proud of these boys and I look forward to coaching them again next year.”
The Logan Middle School girls’ team enjoyed much more success in the regular season this year, finishing 8-6 overall.
Ever since last year, before the MVAC tournament the team plays in a smaller tournament at Coonskin Park.
The girls team won the tournament against the teams that came from Greenbrier and built a wave of momentum going into the MVAC tournament.
“The key to all of the girls success this season is our depth,” Coach Kidd said. “From head to toe, one seed to six seed, we were strong. We didn’t have to hide any players out there. All of our starters could go out, compete, and play to win. They weren’t intimidated by teams and believed they could win. Winning this tournament meant a lot to the program and its players.”
In the MVAC tournament, the girls received four seeds, mostly across the board, but also found themselves matched up with familiar opponents such as Ripley.
“On both sides of the ball, boys and girls, we were so close,” he said. “We were almost identical teams in terms of talent. All of the matches were close every time we played them.”
Logan’s No. 1 seed Emma Justice fell to Ripley in the quarterfinals 9-7.
No. 2 seed RaeAnne Reed defeated Ripley in a thrilling 9-8 (9-7 tiebreaker) win. She went on to lose in the semifinals to Hurricane 8-4.
“Her match against Ripley was the match of the tournament,” Kidd said. “You should have seen her play Hurricane. She had that girl on the ropes early tied 3-3 then 4-3. It was a scene. Every coach there from every school left their players to watch RaeAnne’s match because she was threatening to change the outcome of the whole tournament. She lost but she’s got guts. Everyone there knows who she is now.”
No. 3 seed Alexis Jones lost to Ripley 8-1 in the quarterfinals.
Cassidy Kazee, the fourth seed, lost to Ripley 8-4 in the quarterfinals.
Justice and Jones lost their doubles match to Ripley 8-2.
Reed and Kazee lost their doubles match to Ripley 8-5.
Chelby Miller and Jamie Ball won their doubles match against Ripley 8-5. They went on to lose to Winfield 8-0.
Kidd said it’s been a nice fall season of tennis.
“I made a deal with my players that if they accomplished either then I would take on the triple atomic wing challenge at Quaker Steak,” Kidd joked. “It was painful but they loved seeing me cry. It was a good time. That’s what I’ll remember about this season. It was a good time.”