Duo’s solid beginning: Tigers’ new No. 1 doubles combo clicks in victory

Gabe Campos ducks as partner Felix Reinermann serves Thursday during a 3-6, 6-1, 6-1 victory at No. 1 doubles. GJ won the match 6-1.

Changing tennis doubles partners can be tough.

It can be even harder when you barely know the guy, but it hasn’t been for Gabe Campos.

The Grand Junction High School junior is playing with a new doubles partner he met just a few weeks ago. Campos and Germany exchange student Felix Reinermann played their first high school match together on Tuesday.

After a shaky start, Campos and Reinermann rallied to defeat Fruita Monument’s Ryan Hautzinger and Tanner McKenzie 3-6, 6-1, 6-1 in the Tigers’ 6-1 victory at Fruita Monument High School.

“Both of us are excited to play with each other,” Campos said. “We let the nerves get to us and that’s understandable. This is his first time playing in the USA. I’d be nervous if I was playing in Germany. I was happy he played the way he played. It took us a set, but I don’t care. We still went out there and did our best. It’s all good.”

“It’s easy to play with Gabe,” Reinermann said. “I know he’s a cool guy. I don’t have to pay attention if I say something stupid to him. I know he doesn’t take it serious if I say something bad to him.”

Matching doubles partners can be tricky. Grand Junction coach Carol Elliott knows, but she was pleased with their result.

“There is a lot of dynamics involved in doubles,” Elliott said. “For the first match, not bad.

“They came back very strong in the second and third sets. They calmed down and got some balls in play.”

Most of the matches went a little smoother for the Tigers.

Grand Junction No. 1 singles player Spencer Weinberg and No. 2 doubles team of Tate Hegstrom and Caleb Gartner won without giving up a game. No. 2 singles player Luke Ledebur and No. 3 doubles players Daniel Ness and Jake Filutze dropped one game in their victories. Grand Junction senior Parker Hegstrom squeezed by Cody Iden in the first set en route to a 7-6 (7-3), 6-3 victory.

“I’m impressed,” Elliott said. “We’ve been practicing very hard. The kids are positive and building the friendships you need to get through the season. A lot of these kids are new to varsity and it’s a lot different than just going out there and playing matches and tournaments in the summer. There is a little more pressure involved, but it’s a good start for us.”

Fruita Monument’s No. 4 doubles team of Spencer Link and Tucker Fortson scored the Wildcats’ point with a 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 (7-5) victory over Jeff Hansen and Matthew Prinster.


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