WICHITA — The McPherson High School girls tennis team placed fifth at the always-tough Tournament of Champions, hosted by Wichita Collegiate on Saturday.
The host Spartans won the event with 79 points, but Kapaun Mt. Carmel could not have been any closer with 78 points. Third-place Andover made it tight with 73 points, while Topeka Hayden (54) and McPherson (51) rounded out the top five.
McPherson senior CeAnna Allen, who won an undefeated doubles state championship last year with the graduated Taylor Bruce, earned her 100th career varsity win on Saturday.
McPherson’s Casyn Buchman owns the school record with 135 wins.
"[Allen] joins a select few that have reached that milestone such as Kirsten Holle, Camry Holle, Ellea Ediger, Maisie Edmonson, Rachel Ivers and Taylor Bruce, to name a few, over the past few years since I've been coaching at MHS," McPherson coach Tyler Brown said.
Allen and her doubles partner, Perrin Schneider, went 2-2 on the day for 11th place.
"I know Perrin was excited to be able to share that milestone with her partner," Brown said.
The Bullpups were led by a sixth-place performance from Patty Huerta in singles. Huerta, who was unseeded, went 3-2 and reached the quarterfinals.
"Patty showed the field she belongs in the conversation of some of the best singles players in the state," Brown said. "She started in a play-in match and found herself making the quarterfinals before running into probably the best player in the state of Kansas, the three-time state champion Clara Whitaker, from Kapaun."
McPherson’s highest doubles finish came from Taylor Berger and Maddie Dobson, who went 4-1 for ninth.
"To walk away with only one loss on the day is pretty special," Brown said.
Freshman Riggs Kuhn rounded out the McPherson lineup by going 2-2 for 19th place.
"Riggs was able to experience the TOC and showed she can play in a tough field," Brown said.
A fifth-place performance at the Tournament of Champions — one of the toughest tournaments in the state — is respectable, but Brown believes his team can be even better.
"I feel we still haven’t come close to where I hope we will be come October," Brown said. "Overall, we continue to grow and continue to gain valuable experience, which will make us better in those pressure situations."
McPherson returns to action on Tuesday when the Bullpups travel to Goddard for a quad. Goddard, Conway Springs and Wichita Independent will also be in attendance.