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Axelson, Demons have solid state performance

PUEBLO – Prior to this season the Glenwood Springs girls tennis team hadn’t won a match at the Class 4A State Tournament during Phyllis Zilm’s seven-year tenure as head coach.

That all changed at this year’s state tourney.



Staff Report



PUEBLO – Prior to this season the Glenwood Springs girls tennis team hadn’t won a match at the Class 4A State Tournament during Phyllis Zilm’s seven-year tenure as head coach.

That all changed at this year’s state tourney.

Molly Axelson led the Demon charge as Glenwood players combined for four match victories in the three-day tournament which ended Saturday.

Axelson, playing in the No. 3 singles, was knocked into the playback bracket after a 6-0, 6-2 quarterfinal loss to Mary Lauren Crosswell of Mullen, but battled back to take fourth place in the tournament.

“I guess I was a little surprised,” Zilm said. “She was just so composed and that’s when she plays her best.

“We’ve never made it past the first round before (at state), and I don’t think anybody else from the (western) region was there. It was just little old Glenwood Springs.”

As a team the Demons finished in eighth place with nine points, placing ahead of Western Slope foes Steamboat Springs (3 points) and Aspen (2). Kent Denver won the team title with 71 points, followed by Cheyenne Mountain (67) and Mullen (52).

After being knocked into the playback bracket Axelson rallied for a victory over Sarah Zaslow of Niwot. The Glenwood senior lost the first set 7-5 but rolled in the next two 6-3, 6-2 to set up a third-place contest with Jessica Fox of Kent Denver.

Axelson pressured Fox, but couldn’t break through in the 6-4, 6-3 loss. Casey Wetzig of Cheyenne Mountain won the No. 3 singles title

In No. 2 doubles action, Jackie Weast and Regina Waltsak won their first two matches to advance to the semifinal round.

After winning their Thursday opening match 6-2, 6-3, the quarterfinal contest was delayed due to weather on Thursday night with Weast and Waltsak trailing 5-2. The break worked well for the Glenwood pair. The Demon duo won the next five games to take the first set 7-5 and cruised to a 6-3 second-set victory.

Ashley Blanco and Kristen Boe of Cheyenne Mountain knocked Weast and Waltsak into the playback bracket in the semifinals in a tight 6-2, 7-6(2) match and the Demons were swept in the

Tennis: see page 17

playback semis by Mullen’s Katherine Von Rueden and Cari Hudson.

Blanco and Boe ended up second in the tournament to Ali Nycum and Lindsey Kucera of Kent Denver.

No. 2 singles player Courtney McCallum, who fell in the first round, was the third qualifier for Glenwood.

“I just think all (the Demon players) handled themselves really well against the big schools,” Zilm said. “The tennis was good, but they represented themselves very well as far as behavior. To me that’s a huge thing.”

For more results see Scoreboard on page 15.


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