Central’s Basinski finally healthy as regionals approach

Central’s Aimee Basinski is the defending regional champion at No. 1 singles and is just rounding into form after a pair of injuries.

The injury bug hasn’t kept Central High School’s Aimee Basinski down.

Not even after one sprained ankle that left her temporarily on crutches.

And not after another sprained ankle, only one week after recovering from the first.

At 7-3, 6-0 after recovering from her second ankle sprain, the junior and defending No. 1 singles Class 5A regional champion is finally healthy heading into Thursday’s 5A regional at the Elliott Tennis Center.

Play begins at 8 a.m.

“The hardest part was to force myself not to play tennis so that it would heal properly,” Basinski said.

So she rested. Staying in shape, particularly necessary in the court-covering game of singles, was not easy.

“I didn’t (stay in shape),” Basinski said.

She missed four matches — about half of her dual-meet season — with the ankle injuries.

Grand Junction High School managed to stay relatively healthy, however, as it won the Southwestern League title. The Tigers hope those championship vibes transfer to regionals.

Nicky Arja is 9-1 at No. 2 singles and Kylie Pond 7-3 at No. 1 singles for the Tigers.

“It was a great accomplishment for our girls,” Grand Junction coach Carol Elliott said. “We still have Central, Fruita Monument and us, and those matches are always tight, plus Heritage coming from the (Front Range) and they’re probably the team to beat.”

The meet also features Overland and Rock Canyon from the Front Range.

Basinski will receive a bye in her first match before facing the winner of Fort Collins’ Molly Smith and Fruita Monument’s Grace Gaglione in the quarterfinals, scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m.

“She hasn’t really been on her game yet,” Central coach Kathy Elliott said of Basinski. “But the next two days at regionals she’ll have a chance to improve.”


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