As has been the case all season, the Alliance boys tennis team dominated both of its opponents during the Gering Triangular on Tuesday afternoon at Gering High School.
Alliance posted 4-0 shutouts over both Gering and Scottsbluff.
Gering edged Scottsbluff 3-2 in the other dual.
After returning nearly everyone from last year’s team that finished fifth at the Class B state tournament, Alliance looks to be in solid position to make a run at an even higher finish this fall.
“We’re using these last few competitions as tune ups for state,” said Alliance coach Rich Stickney, whose team wraps up its regular-season schedule with a dual against McCook on Tuesday in Scottsbluff. “We want to keep working hard on our strategy and positioning along with constructing better points and finishing rallies.”
Stickney’s squad showed very few weaknesses against both Gering and Scottsbluff on Tuesday. In all four positions, Alliance didn’t drop a single set.
“I thought we played pretty well,” Stickney said. “We might have been a little tired from the weekend, but I was pleased with how everyone came out and played pretty consistent today.”
In its opening win over Gering, Keagan Hill and Alex Elston proved too tough in singles action. Hill beat Brian Doll 6-0, 6-1 at No. 1 singles and Elston topped Jason Doll 6-3, 6-1 at No. 2 singles.
Alliance’s Kyler Kaping and Keith Sanders teamed up to down Noah Miller and Alex Lupher 6-0, 6-1 at No. 1 doubles, while Brodie Fielding and Brian Gould turned back Anthony Ramirez and Vince Moreno 6-1, 6-3 at No. 2 doubles.
Hill stepped up his play even more in a 6-0, 6-0 win over Scottsbluff’s Xavian Perez in the Bulldogs’ victory over the Bearcats. Elston also was hitting on all cylinders in a 6-1, 6-0 win against Eric Olsen.
In doubles action, Kaping and Sanders powered past Traver Pettijohn and Sean Mercer-Smith 6-0, 6-1 and Fielding and Gould stopped Logan Woodward and Blake Wilberger 6-2, 6-3.
Stickney believes if his Bulldogs continue playing and competing at a high level, it very well could lead to more success in the postseason.
“I’m anxious to see how we’re going to be seeded,” Stickney said. “You never know how that is going to work out, but I really believe our records speak for themselves. I’ve been extremely pleased with how we’ve performed all season.”
The wins improved Alliance’s dual record to 7-2.
In Gering’s win over Scottsbluff on Tuesday, the Bulldogs received a 7-5, 6-1 win from Jason Doll over Olsen at No. 2 singles. At No. 1 singles, Scottsbluff’s Perez posted a 7-5, 6-2 win over Brian Doll.
Gering managed wins in two of the three doubles matches.
At No. 1 doubles, Miller and Lupher rallied to beat Mercer-Smith and Pettijohn 6-7, 6-3, 7-5, while Ramirez and Moreno teamed up for a 6-2, 6-4 win over Woodward and Wilberger at No. 2 doubles.
Scottsbluff came out on top at No. 3 doubles when Owen Parra and Court Muhr posted a 6-3, 6-1 win over Gering’s Jarron Rasnic and Ben Olmstead.
“The boys match up well with Scottsbluff. We always have very close and competitive matches,” Gering coach Matt Palomo said. “Alliance has a very strong team with five seniors. They always have a good program.”
Like Palomo, Scottsbluff coach Ron Swank also lauded Alliance’s strong performance.
“It was a dominant performance. Alliance has an exceptional team,” Swank said. “We won a match or two I was not expecting to win and we lost a couple I had hoped to win. It just proves you have to play the match to find out who wins.”
Scottsbluff will return to action on Saturday at the Greater Nebraska Athletic Conference Tournament in Norfolk.
Gering’s regular-season schedule is now concluded.
Alliance, Scottsbluff and Gering will all compete in the Class B state tournament Oct. 11-12 in Lincoln.
Alliance 4, Gering 0
No. 1 singles — Keagan Hill, Alliance, defeated Brian Doll, Gering, 6-0, 6-1.
No. 2 singles — Alex Elston, Alliance, defeated Jason Doll, Gering, 6-3, 6-1.
No. 1 doubles — Kyler Kaping, Keith Sanders, Alliance, defeated Noah Miller, Alex Lupher, Gering, 6-0, 6-1.
No. 2 doubles — Brodie Fielding, Brian Gould, Alliance, defeated Anthony Ramirez, Vince Moreno, Gering, 6-1, 6-3.
Alliance 4, Scottsbluff 0
No. 1 singles — Keagan Hill, Alliance, defeated Xavian Perez, Scottsbluff, 6-0, 6-0.
No. 2 singles — Alex Elston, Alliance, defeated Eric Olsen, Scottsbluff, 6-1, 6-0.
No. 1 doubles — Kyler Kaping, Keith Sanders, Alliance, defeated Traver Pettijohn, Sean Mercer-Smith, Scottsbluff, 6-0, 6-1.
No. 2 doubles — Brodie Fielding, Brian Gould, Alliance, defeated Logan Woodward, Blake Wilberger, 6-2, 6-3.
Gering 3, Scottsbluff 2
No. 1 singles — Xavian Perez, Scottsbluff, defeated Brian Doll, Gering, 7-5, 6-2.
No. 2 singles — Jason Doll, Gering, defeated Eric Olsen, Scottsbluff, 7-5, 6-1.
No. 1 doubles — Noah Miller, Alex Lupher, Gering, defeated Sean Mercer-Smith, Traver Pettijohn, Scottsbluff, 6-7, 6-3, 7-5.
No. 2 doubles — Anthony Ramirez, Vince Moreno, Gering, defeated Logan Woodward, Blake Wilberger, Scottsbluff, 6-3, 6-4.
No. 3 doubles — Owen Parra, Court Muhr, Scottsbluff, defeated Jarron Rasnic, Ben Olmstead, Gering, 6-3, 6-1.