Observer staff

The La Grande Tigers tennis team played on its new tennis courts for the first time Tuesday and came out with mixed results. The LHS boys went 4-4 in their matches against the Vale Vikings, while the girls dropped all eight contests.

The new courts, on the site of old Central Elementary School, are not quite finished, as they still need a hard court playing surface put on top of the asphalt currently in place.

But it still beats what the Tigers had been on previously, with the old LHS courts and the current courts at Eastern Oregon University plagued with cracks and
battered nets.

“It’s very exciting,” Head Coach Mark Carollo said. “Not only for the tennis team and the high school, but really the community. Since my time here in La Grande, we haven’t had any great courts. It still needs a little bit of work — that top surface needs (to be placed) — but it’s turning into a gorgeous facility. It’s something we need to take pride in.”

The boys had their best success against Vale in singles, winning three matches. Caysen Forsberg dropped the No. 1 singles match to Porter McKrola (6-0, 6-2), but the Tigers followed with wins by Colm Cahill over William Gonzalez (6-0, 6-1), Adam Remily over Blake Reed (6-2, 6-1), and Ashton Morwood over Gonzalez (8-3).

In doubles, James Thurman and Scott Remily fell to Marco Ramirez and Japheth Carlson (6-1, 6-4), Nick DuVernay and Kaleb Myer lost to Payton Kelso and Ricky Leyva (6-1, 6-1), and Mason Mellinger and Gabe Blackman dropped their match to Justin Buhrig and Jared Hally (6-3, 6-2). The Tigers’ win in doubles came from Caden Johnson and Devin Ingram, who topped Jorge Mendieta and Kaden Ruckman, 8-4.

The LHS girls dropped each of their matches in straight sets. In singles, Rebecca Conklin lost to Whitney Milleson (6-0, 6-3), Brenna Bushman fell to Flavia Bruton (6-0, 6-0), Maria Ortiz was defeated by Kailey McGourty (6-0, 6-0), and Emily Wilson dropped an 8-2 match to Jackie Marquez.

In doubles, Maylen Tommy and Mattie Hendrickson lost to Rachel Wolfe and Maycee Delong (6-1, 6-0), Brittany Robles and Maritza Villagomez were topped by Alexis Schaffeld and Riley Kesey (6-1, 6-0), Katelin Banes and Lindsay Shaul fell to Morgan Bruton and ZuDiia Hill (6-0, 6-1), and Isabelle Hadley and Celeste Villagomez dropped a match to Erika McBride and Jessi Arriola (8-0).

The Tigers return to action Tuesday when they travel to Ontario.

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