Two Steamboat doubles teams reach semis

Ben Paley of Steamboat Springs serves while partner Zach Yalicenti waits at the net during their 3A doubles quarterfinal match Thursday, Oct. 16, 2008, at City Park in Pueblo, Co. They lost 6-3, 6-2 to a team from Niwot. (AP Photo,/Pueblo Chieftain, Chris McLean)

PUEBLO — Winning matches at the Class 4A state boys tennis tournament is never an easy task.
Montrose High School’s Robert Herr (No. 1 singles) and Douglas Hallenborg and Zach Decker (No. 4 doubles) found that out Thursday morning at the City Park Tennis Complex.

Herr was upended by Mullen’s Stan Vaughan 6-0, 6-1 in the first round and Hallenborg and Decker were ousted by Hank Woolley and Sam Stein of Colorado Academy 6-3, 6-2.

“The competition at state is always tough,” Herr said. “Vaughan is a good player.”

Vaughan, who finished second at state last year at No. 2 singles, was upset in the quarterfinals by Joseph Aragon of Fossil Ridge 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 in the quarterfinals.

Perennial state contender Steamboat Springs had Charlie Smith and Jack Burger (No. 1 doubles) and Vladan Chase and Eric Sortland (No. 4 doubles) advance into today’s semifinals, which get under way at 9 a.m.

“We played good (Thursday),” Smith said. “We just have to come out and play our best against Kent Denver. They smoked us the first time we played them this season, but we’re a completely different team now.”

Smith and Burger tangle with Kent Denver’s Chase Procknow and James Kreidle in the semis.

Like the Indians, Aspen also had a tough opening day. Aspen’s Taylor Lambert (No. 2 singles), Kyle Feuer and Paul Young (No. 1 doubles) and Cole Green-Smith and Luke Pratt (No. 2 doubles) all lost their first-round matches.

Aspen’s Michael Willsky (No. 3 singles) made it to the quarters before he was upended by Connor Hudson of Mullen 6-1, 6-2.

Cheyenne Mountain High School made a statement on the opening day.

The Indians, who have won 13 of the past 16 state titles outright, went undefeated through the first round and quarterfinals.

“That’s as much as you could ask for,” said veteran Cheyenne coach Dave Adams, whose team has won three state titles in a row. “We had a number of guys step up and have clutch performances. Now, we just have to be ready to play our matches (today).”

John Adams (No. 1 singles), Jonathon Moore (No. 2 singles), Michael Cutter (No. 3 singles), Kevin Lynch/Matt Bowser (No. 1 doubles), Ari Halling/Parker Curry (No. 2 doubles), Matt Shoemaker/Jay Hendren (No. 3 doubles) and Spencer Heintz/Chris Stuller (No. 4 doubles) all moved into their respective semifinals

Cheyenne is atop the team chase with 14 points, followed by Kent Denver and Mullen, which are tied for second with 12 points each.

Kent Denver has players competing in six semifinal brackets and Mullen has competitors in five semifinals.

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