GREELEY — What an absolute roller coaster ride the past two weeks have been for the Peak to Peak girls tennis team.
The Pumas were rolling right along through their best season ever and then, two weeks ago, first-year head coach Peter Nestel stepped away from the program.
Devastating for most clubs, Peak to Peak's girls have persevered — winning a regional crown at Colorado Academy last week while qualifying their entire team for the Class 3A state tournament.
And after Day 1 at state at Greeley's Centennial Courts, they find themselves right in the mix of a crowded team race.
At the top of the Pumas ladder for the past three seasons has been the Somasundaram twins, Trisha (No. 1) and Trini (No. 2), and on Thursday, the warmest day of the season, they rolled through to Friday morning's semifinals having dropped just nine games between them.
"These past two week shave been some of the most exciting times for us, almost better than prom, but I think we were all just so surprised we all made it to state," Trisha Somasundaram said. "We don't have a coach, so we just told ourselves, let's try our best, because we have a good team and we think we can win.
"We all have each other and we depend on each other and since we don't have that coaching, we just have to motivate each other."
Trisha Somasundaram rolled through her first round match in just over 30 minutes to set up a quarterfinal showdown against Holy Family's Julia Giltner.
After falling behind 3-2 early on, Somasundaram rattled off 10 straight games to win 6-3, 6-0 and advance to the semifinals against her summer time USTA doubles partner, Mia Oliver of Denver North.
"This was way harder than last year and there are so many better players," said Trisha, who was knocked out in an epic three set semifinal match last season to the eventual champion Sammy Moore-Thomson of Colorado Academy. "Today was important for me because I just wanted to get to the semis and try my best from there."
Trini Somasundaram will take on D'Evelyn senior Angi Reed in the No. 2 semifinals starting at 8 a.m. Also in the semis is No. 3 singles freshman Tiffany Tran. Tran took out Mead's Haley Vavla in the first round.
On the bottom half of the No. 3 singles draw is where Holy Family senior An Tran made her way though to the semifinals. After a quick 6-0, 6-0 win in the first round, Tran labored in the heat of the day but outlasted Aspen freshman Macy Hopkinson 6-3, 6-4 to move on.
"I approach tomorrow the same way I do any other match," said An Tran, who appeared in championship matches as a doubles player as a freshman and sophomore. "There's a ton of pressure being here, but I've been here before.
"I told myself to just do you, you know how to play the game."
The Tigers, who were one of three BoCo team to qualify all seven positions (Dawson and Peak to Peak the others), also advanced No. 2 singles senior Paige Giltner — who survived a three-set marathon with CS School's Kate Griffin — as well as three of their doubles teams. It was good enough to have Holy Family in first place after Day 1 with 17 points.
Reigning BoCo Player of the Year Bridget Bell of Dawson was taken out in the first round of the No. 1 singles by Aspen's Mary Williams and won't get a chance in the playbacks, after Williams was eliminated in the quarters.
The Mustangs had much better luck on the doubles side on Thursday, advancing all four spots to Friday festivities that will now include the championship finals, a move made by the CHSAA to beat the impending weather.
"We were realistic. We had a relative competitive inexperience at some of the top spots and we expected the second round to be challenging," Dawson coach Kathy Benninghoff said. "We are sitting where we thought we'd be with all the doubles in the semis and what we need to do, unlike last year is pull our doubles team through to the finals."
First-time state showings by individuals and team from Erie, Frederick and Prospect Ridge didn't produce any wins. But the best opening match of the No. 1 singles draw was Frederick's Chasen Marinoff, who went three sets with Pueblo County's Erin Mauro before falling 6-4, 4-6, 6-2.
CLASS 3A STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS
At Centennial Courts and UNC (Greeley)
Team scores (thru second round) — Holy Family 17, D'Evelyn 16, Dawson 14, Peak to Peak 13, Colorado Academy 8, University 7, Aspen 6, Pueblo County 5, Steamboat Springs 5, Denver North 4, Eaton 4, C.S. School 4, The Vanguard 3, Sterling 2, Salida 2, Lutheran 1, Fort Morgan 1.
No. 1 singles — Trisha Somasundaram, Peak to Peak def. Gabrielle Moseley, Lutheran, 6-0, 6-0; Julia Giltner, Holy Family def. Alyssa Peters, Salida, 6-0, 6-0; Mary Williams, Aspen def. Bridget Bell, Dawson, 6-2, 6-3; Mia Oliver, Denver North def. Julia Ssessanga, Sterling, 6-1, 6-1; Mae Thorp, Steamboat Springs def. Tristen VanDeVeer, C.S. Christian, 6-1, 6-2; Erin Mauro, Pueblo County def. Chasen Marinoff, Frederick, 6-4, 4-6, 6-2; Savannah Mease, Colorado Academy def. Camille Krammer, University, 6-1, 6-4; Jules Thompson, C.S. School def. Samantha Johnson, D'Evelyn, 6-1, 7-5.
No. 2 singles — Elizabeth Van der Torre, University def. Sara Larson, Lutheran, 6-4, 6-1; Trini Somasundaram, Peak to Peak def. Nicole Alderman, Vanguard, 6-1, 6-0; Shelbie Scherff, Salida def. Skylar Barr, Vail Mountain, 6-2, 6-4; Angi Reed, D'Evelyn def. Jessica Kelley, Frederick, 6-3, 6-2; Kate Griffin, C.S. School def. Darcie Kaiser, Eaton, 6-2, 7-5; Paige Giltner, Holy Family def. Delaney DeMott, Fountain Valley, 6-3, 6-4; Niko Hansen, Aspen def. Lila Arnold, Colorado Academy, 7-5, 6-1; Aria Barbour, Dawson def. Aly Miller, Prospect Ridge, 6-1, 6-2.
No. 3 singles — Alexis Gilio, Dawson def. Sophie Daniel, Vail Mountain, 6-3, 5-7, 6-0; Elisa Dean, D'Evelyn def. Ali Sundrup, Lutheran, 6-2, 6-3; Maile Kilen, Denver North def. Kathryn Edgington, Salida, 6-3, 6-4; Tiffany Tran, Peak to Peak def. Haley Vavla, Mead, 6-0, 6-2; Tacey Davis, Vanguard def. Hailey Fehringer, Sterling, 6-2, 2-6, 6-2; Amanda Funk, Colorado Academy def. Heather Marion, University, 6-2, 6-4; Macy Hopkinson, Aspen def. Hina Suzuki, C.S. School, 6-2, 6-2; An Tran, Holy Family def. Isbella Fernandez, Fountain Valley, 6-0, 6-0.
No. 1 doubles — Acacia Dean/Emily Bell, Pueblo County def. Darby Kelley/Ali Leen, St. Mary's, 2-6, 6-3, 7-5; Natalie Orcutt/Alexsei Vieyra, University def. Alex Ford/Alexia Howard, Colorado Academy, 7-5, 6-4; Morgan Sauerbrey/Lauren Ehrlich, Steamboat Springs def. Aly Dewberry/Melissa McKenna, Salida, 6-2, 6-2; Allie Blank/Isabelle Shehan, Dawson def. Paige McSavaney/Renesa Khanna, Peak to Peak, 6-0, 6-2; Ciara Donovan/Lexi Licata, Holy Family def. Sawer Ross/Cheyenne McLelland, Glenwood Springs, 6-3, 6-2; Erin Dornan/Mia Jackson, Vanguard def. Hattie Dahlin/Ava Dalton, Conifer, 6-3, 6-1; Maddy Harper/Abby Kate Sears, Eaton def. Karis Moore/Julie Bremser, Erie, 6-2, 6-2; Cammy Lee/Olivia Sanders, D'Evelyn def. Michaela Thoman/Brooke Sweatman, C.S. Christian, 6-1, 6-1.
No. 2 doubles — Charity Perkes/Keri Jennings, D'Evelyn def. Amy Speer/Amanda Walker, Steamboat Springs, 6-3, 6-1; Caolinn Mullaney/Tswana Caine, Vanguard def. Ashley Andrews/Ashton Selke, Mead, 6-4, 7-6; Kadie Griffith/Mikaelee Salberg, Eaton def. Naomi Burns/Amber Sharma, Peak to Peak, 2-6, 6-2, 6-1; Katelyn Freeman/Jessica Swanson, Sterling def. Mikayla DeCarlo/Sophia Valentine, Pueblo County, 6-0, 6-3; Arianna Rabor/Lindsey Bartoletta, Holy Family def. Jessie Levesque-Etling/Marissa Rocconova, Conifer, 6-1, 6-1; Ann-Claire Lin/Story Wolf-Tinsman, Colorado Academy def. Abby Holm/Addison Barstad, Lutheran, 6-2, 6-1; Addy Walson/Bliss Pekalla, Aspen def. Lyssie Aguilar/Kamryn Osborn, La Junta, 6-4, 6-1; Quin Ramos/Alexa Rinard, Dawson def. Kayla Merkx/Christine Ajayi, C.S. Christian, 6-1, 6-1.
No. 3 doubles — Eloise Shehan/Victoria Joris, Dawson def. Danielle Dukes/Kayda Kreutzer, Prospect Ridge, 6-0, 6-0; Jenna Vanderhyde/Brianna Blake, Lutheran def. Atley Kleven/Lauren Oliver, Pueblo County, 6-7, 6-1, 7-6; Lily Stephens/Ruby Shomiob, Salida def. Vasilisa Hebet/Hannah Martin, Vanguard, 6-3, 6-3; Lainie Bonthron/Abby Hawley, D'Evelyn def. Monica Cichon/Lauren Sauley, St. Mary's, 6-0, 6-0; Acacia Doughty/Natalie Flores, Fort Morgan def. Este Wilkinson/Maddie Heyden, Steamboat Springs, 6-4, 6-4; Isabella Brakhage/Madison Lin, Peak to Peak def. Campbell Smith/Kylie Zanini, Mead, 6-2, 6-3; Caroline Smolky/Emily Lindoerfer, Holy Family def. Lauren Preston/Charlotte Pulido, Colorado Academy, 4-6, 6-3, 6-1; Mariah Gohson/Rachel Rosas, Sterling def. Mia Cooper/Bayli McSpadden, Vail Mountain, 6-2, 6-0.
No. 4 doubles — Mharie Brigham/Natalie Gordon, Colorado Academy def. Shea Baucke/Payton Devlin, Eaton, 6-4, 3-6, 7-6; Grace Coster/Evelin Mojica, Holy Family def. Kate Sierra/Isabelle Bui, Arvada, 6-1, 6-1; Maria Koop/Christina Hathaway, Steamboat Springs def. Zuzia Kudasik/Ellie Richardson, Salida, 6-7, 6-3, 7-6; Julia Garfinkel/Sarah Devereux, Dawson def. Jillian Kellick/Lisanne Cheatham, St. Mary's, 6-0, 6-0; Teya Hawkins/Haley Wood, University def. Jaden Fuqua/Raina Fagans, Vanguard, 6-3, 6-4; Victoria Mateer/Natalie Kazaleh, D'Evelyn def. Jennifer Williams/Shaunessy Wolak, Erie, 6-1, 6-3; Paige Burns/Claire Franz, Peak to Peak def. Anne Fort/ Claire Peterson, Lutheran, 6-2, 7-5; Ashlee Hanratty/Kinley Gomez, Pueblo County def. Shoshana Vigil/Kendyll Siettmann, Delta, 6-2, 6-1.
No. 1 singles — Trisha Somasundaram, Peak to Peak def. J. Giltner, Holy Family, 6-3, 6-0; Oliver, Denver North def. Williams, Aspen, 6-2, 6-4; Thorp, Steamboat Springs def. Mauro, Pueblo County, 6-1, 6-0; Thompson, C.S. School def. Mease, Colorado Academy, 5-7, 6-1, 6-4.
No. 2 singles — Trini Somasundaram, Peak to Peak def. Van der Torre, University, 6-2, 6-3; Reed, D'Evelyn def. Scherff, Salida, 6-2, 6-4; P. Giltner, Holy Family def. Griffin, C.S. School, 6-4, 4-6, 6-3; Hansen, Aspen def. Barbour, Dawson, 7-5, 6-2.
No. 3 singles — Dean, D'Evelyn def. Gilio, Dawson, 6-1, 6-1; Tran, Peak to Peak def. Kilen, Denver North, 6-0, 6-1; Funk, Colorado Academy def. Davis, Vanguard, 7-5, 6-0; Tran, Holy Family def. Hopkinson, Aspen, 6-3, 6-4.
No. 1 doubles — Orcutt/Vieyra, University def. Dasher/Bell, Pueblo County, 6-3, 5-7, 6-2; Blank/Shehan, Dawson def. Sauerbrey/Ehrlich, Steamboat Springs, 5-7, 6-1, 6-4; Donovan/Licata, Holy Family def. Dornan/Jackson, Vanguard, 6-3, 6-3; Lee/Sanders, D'Evelyn def. Harper/Sears, Eaton, 6-7, 6-4, 6-3.
No. 2 doubles — Perkes/Jennings, D'Evelyn def. Mullaney/Caine, Vanguard, 6-0, 6-0; Griffith/Salberg, Eaton def. Freeman/Swanson, Sterling, 7-6, 7-5; Lin/Wolf-Tinsman, Colorado Academy def. Rabor/Bartoletta, Holy Family, 2-6, 6-2, 6-0; Ramos/Rinard, Dawson def. Walson/Pekalla, Aspen, 6-1, 3-6, 6-1.
No. 3 doubles — Shehan/Joris, Dawson def. Vanderhyde/Blake, Lutheran, 6-3, 6-2; Bonthron/Hawley, D'Evelyn def. Stephens/Shomiob, Salida, 6-1, 6-1; Brakhage/Lin, Peak to Peak def. Doughty/Flores, Fort Morgan, 6-0, 6-4; Smolky/Lindoerfer, Holy Family def. Gohson/Rosas, Sterling, 6-2, 6-0.
No. 4 doubles — Coster/Mojica, Holy Family def. Brigham/Gordon, Colorado Academy, 6-3, 6-2; Garfinkel/Devereux, Dawson def. Koop/Hathaway, Steamboat Springs, 6-2, 6-4; Hawkins/Wood, University def. Mateer/Kazaleh, D'Evelyn, 4-6, 6-2, 6-4; Hanratty/Gomez, Pueblo County def. Burns/Franz, Peak to Peak, 7-6, 6-3.