BHS seniors end career with fourth-place finish
After four years of perfecting serves, practicing strokes and having fun, Baldwin High School seniors Katie Beall and Kristen Ferris proved to be fighters when they ended their BHS tennis careers victoriously at the Class 4A State Tennis Tournament Saturday.
The doubles team was rewarded with a fourth-place medal after competing at the state tournament, which was played at the Topeka Kossover Tennis Center.
"Wow," coach Ginny Honomichl said. "What a nice way to finish this tennis season with a fourth place finish at the state 4A Tournament."
To begin the day on Friday, Beall and Ferris defeated Crystal Funke and Allie Osner, of Kingman. After winning the first set 6-0, the team struggled and lost the next set 3-6. Beall and Ferris collected themselves and easily defeated the Kingman team 6-1 in the last set to win the match.
"We got really lucky as far as our tournament seeding," Beall said. "Neither of the teams we played first round were push-overs, but they were both very winnable' matches and we took advantage of the opportunity."
The Bulldogs proved their worth again when they won the second match late Friday afternoon. Beall and Ferris defeated the Smoky Valley doubles team of Amanda Wann and Morgan Hubele in three sets going 6-4, 2-6, and 6-4. By winning the match the doubles team advanced to semifinal play that began on Saturday.
"The Smoky Valley match should have gone much smoother than it did," Ferris said. "After barely winning the first set we made a mistake and began to relax. That's why we lost the second set 2-6. We didn't really kick it into gear until we were down 1-4 in the third set."
Saturday's competition proved fierce as Beall and Ferris struggled with the Parson's doubles team of Maggie Goedeke and Molly Kearns, who eventually won the state title. They lost the first set 1-6 but demonstrated their perseverance and skill when they fought back and barely lost the next set 6-7 in a tiebreaker that ended 7-2.
"Kristen and I were really proud of how we played against Parsons in the semifinals," Beall said. "It was nice to be able to say we scored more games against Parsons than any other team at state."
Next Beall and Ferris played a DeSoto doubles team for third place. They were defeated after two sets, losing each set 2-6. Nonetheless, the team was happy with their overall performance and excited about their medal.
"State this year was so amazing," Ferris said. "The weather was perfect, we couldn't have gotten a better draw and I had so much fun. It was an awesome way to end my tennis career here at BHS."
Beall and Ferris pulled out a seventh-place finish for Baldwin in the team standings by acquiring 10 points for their fourth place finish. They ended the season with a final record of 19-10.
"We are very proud of these two young ladies," Honomichl said. "We will definitely miss them next year."