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FRANKFORT – There could not have been a more fitting reason for a tennis match to be delayed.
Anderson County's Hannah Wampler had to wait until after 7 p.m. – more than two hours after all other quarterfinal matches started – to get things underway against Oldham County's Aspen Jarrett last Tuesday. Jarrett was scheduled to take an Advanced Placement test and could not make it to Western Hills High School by normal 4:30 start.
How Jarrett fared in that written exercise isn't known. But as the No. 1 seed in the Eighth Region Tournament, Jarrett put on a clinic in advanced placement, tennis style.
Jarrett coolly worked the base line with a conservative serve-and-volley game plan that waited on Wampler, the No. 6 seed in a tournament with over 30 entries, to make a mistake.
Jarrett advanced to the regional semi-final, and locked up a berth in the state tournament, with an impressive 6-1, 6-1 win.
And there is little doubt that Jarret passed her tennis test by putting on a clinic in advanced placement of the yellow ball.
“She was very accurate,” Anderson coach Jeremy Cook said. “She could place the ball just about anywhere she wanted to. She is a very strong player and did not make a lot of errors.”
Wampler, a junior shooting for her first state berth in singles competition – she made it to the state with her older sister, Amanda, as a doubles entry two years ago – was never able to overcome Jarrett's near-perfection. Even when things seemed to be going right for Wampler, Jarrett often turned the table.
“I told her to keep her head up,” Cook said of his post-match meeting with the teary-eyed Wampler. “Most people will loook at that score and won't realize how close of a match it was. There were a couple of games that things just didn't go her way.
“You have to have some luck to win a tennis match too.”
That Wampler was not going to experience a day of good fortune was obvious early. In the first set, Wampler delivered a shot that hit the top of the net, then seemed to harmlessly drop on Jarrett's side for a point for Wampler. Jarrett got to the ball somehow and returned it out of Wampler's reach for a point.
It was one of several points that seemed to end any of Wampler's hopes for an upset.
Cook tipped his hat to Jarrett.
“If I counted correctly, I think there were six games that went to deuce,” Cook said. “(Jarrett) was able to make the plays.”
Several of those deuces went several points before a winner emerged. One game in the first set went to deuce five times.
“This was a close match,” Cook said. “It was much closer than what you would think from just looking at the score.”
Wampler only led once, when she broke Jarrett's service to win the first game of the second set.
But Jarrett returned the favor in the next game and regained control with a game that could easily be described as advanced placement.
Lady Bearcat doubles teams advance to second round
Both Anderson County girls' doubles teams advanced to the second round of the regional tournament before bowing out.
The team of Jacy Isaacs and Kylie Gehefer defeated the Grant County tandem of Maddie Dalzell and Mallory Johnston 6-1, 6-4 in the opener but ran into the second-seeded team, Josie Olliges and Allison Reed of South Oldham, in the next round.
The South Oldham pair made quick work of the Lady Cats, winning 6-0, 6-0.
The other Anderson doubles pair, Breanna Chesser and Rebekah Cardwell, defeated the Frankfort duo of Caroline Bramble and Sierra Demers before going out.
South Oldham's other doubles team, Jennifer Liu and Hannah Walker, ended Chesser's and Cardwell's season, 6-1, 6-1.
Boys' season ends on tourney's first day
No member of the Anderson boys' team advanced past Monday, when all of the first- and second-round matches were played.
Anderson's Hunter Campbell advanced when he defeated Carroll County's Zeke Kates in a tie-breaker but Campbell then ran into top-seeded Jordan Pitts, of South Oldham. Pitts, who advanced to the round of 16 in last year's state tournament, rolled to a 6-0, 6-0 win.
The doubles team of Brandon Boggs and Hunter Campbell easily defeated a team from Bullitt Central in the opener but the North Oldham team of Wallace and Kline outlasted them, 6-3, 6-3, to advance.
All other Anderson entries went out in the first round.