Carpenter advances to Elam Junior final

Courtlyn Carpenter returns a shot back over the net Saturday during her semifinal girls 16 singles match against Sierra Segrest during the Elam Junior tennis tournament at Canyon View Park. Carpenter won the match 6-3, 6-2.

Courtlyn Carpenter doesn’t get caught up in expectations.

The 15-year-old doesn’t keep track of her tennis record or results.

She simply plays for fun. So far, it’s working.

Carpenter advanced to her first junior tournament final — that she can recall, anyway — with a 6-3, 6-2 victory Saturday over Sierra Segrest in the Elam Junior girls 16-under semifinals at Canyon View Park.

“It’s exciting,” Carpenter said. “I didn’t realize I made the finals, but I guess I did.

“I’ll go into it and have fun. I’ll try to win, but if I don’t, that’s fine, too.”

She reached the final of the Delta High School Invitational for the Fruita Monument junior varsity in the spring.

Carpenter will play 16-year-old Nicky Arja, who advanced to her first singles final, at 9:30 this morning at Canyon View Park.

Arja defeated her former Grand Junction High School doubles partner, Emma Holt,  7-5, 6-3 in the other semifinal.

“It was different,” Arja said. “We just had a good time out there. That’s what we really wanted to do. We know we’re both there for each other trying to help improve each other. We would be serious during points, but once we got to the breaks, we would chat the whole time.”

Arja is playing singles for the first time in a tournament. She’s played doubles in several prior tournaments.

“It feels good because we have challenge matches before the season,” Arja said. “Sometimes singles are a little bit harder to get used to. Playing singles helps you improve and get ready for next season.”

Arja and Holt’s high school teammates, Samantha Weinberg and Alex Proietti, advanced to the girls 18-under singles final with straight-set victories in the semifinals.

Weinberg defeated another Grand Junction player, Anna McGinnis, 6-4, 6-4. Proietti defeated Aimee Basinski 6-3, 6-4 in the other semifinal.

Anne Hughes made the girls 14-under final with a 6-0, 6-2 victory over Cassi Ahrens and plays 12-year-old Carolena Campos in the final.

In the boys tournament, Luke Ledebur plays Parker Hegstrom this morning for the 18-under singles title.

Ledebur pulled away from Tristen Beck, 7-6 (7-3), 6-1, and Hegstrom defeated Gabriel Campos 6-2, 5-7, 6-2.

Jesi Nordstrom meets Aaron Arellano in the 16-under final. Arellano won his second three-set match of the tournament; Nordstrom won in straight sets.

Matt Ness plays Lael Nordstrom in the 14-under final and Brody Cupp faces Nolan Beeman of Moab in the 12-under final.


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