NCS tennis tournament a big success as locals make some noise

Submitted photo – Arcata’s Keona Gutierrez-DeArmond and Kyra Alway at this week’s NCS championships.

The North Coast Section Division-2 girls tennis singles and doubles championships were held at McKinleyville and Arcata high schools this week, with the local contingent making some noise.

The tournament was hosted by the H-DNL champion Arcata Tigers, and according to head coach Sheldon Heath, it was a memorable event.

“The tournament was such a success,” Heath said. “I would say it was one of the best section tournaments I’ve ever seen.”

Heath also praised the efforts of fellow Arcata tennis coach Onawa Gutierrez, who organized the big event.

Individually, three H-DNL players posted wins.

In the singles tournament, Northcoast Prep’s Emma Bazemore won her opening match against Maahir Gupta of Lick Wilmerding by a score of 7-6(3), 6-0.

The H-DNL champ then lost her quarterfinal match against Branson’s Anna Rende by a score fo 6-0, 6-1.

Rende would go to place third overall.

In doubles, the Arcata duo of Keona Gutierrez-DeArmond and Kyra Alway won three of their four matches to place third overall.

They beat two different Piedmont duos in straight sets to reach the semifinals, where they fell to San Francisco University’s Alara Ozturk and Cece Erhart in three sets, 4-6, 6-4, 7-5.

They then bounced back to beat University’s Sophie Nutting and Alison Conner in the third-place matchup by a score of 2-6, 6-3, 6-3.

“We underperformed a little bit in the semifinals, but overall we played really well,” Heath said. “They moved like a doubles team. They looked like they belonged out there.”

The losses end another hugely successful season for the Tigers, who continue to dominate the H-DNL in boys and girls tennis.

“It was another undefeated season, that’s five in a row,” said Heath, who has been coaching the team for 15 season. “And like I said, this is the best group of girls I ever had.”

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