I would say that a big part of it (winning state) is the Park City tennis community. We’ve got the next group of kids coming in from the PC —Heather Nicholas
SALT LAKE CITY — Rain forced the 4A state girls tennis tournament finals to relocate from Liberty Park, where teams played on day one of the tournament, to indoors at the Salt Lake Swimming and Tennis Club. Unfazed by the switch in locations and conditions, Park City High School took individual championships in second singles and third singles and won the team title for the third straight time, earning 20 points, five more than Deseret Hills and Ridgeline, which tied for second place. Orem, scoring 13 points, came in third place.
“I think it gets better and better every year,” said Park City head coach Heather Nicholas on winning another state championship. “These girls have worked so hard and we’ve had three new players on the varsity team, so it’s kind of their first time to experience it, so it’s a really good feeling. I’m super proud of them,” she added.
“I would say that a big part of it (winning state) is the Park City tennis community. We’ve got the next group of kids coming in from the PC," Nicholas said. "We’re building the program from the very beginning on. The seniors are irreplaceable, but half of the kids that are going to be on this team for years to come came and cheered them on today. It’s very much a Park City tennis family.”
Park City’s stellar first day, in which it won every match and earned 10 points, continued into Saturday’s matches, thanks to good singles play by the Miners. Livi Rockwood advanced to the first singles final, Gabby Rockwood won the second singles final, and Taylor Matz won the third singles final.
At the individual level, Ridgeline's Naya Tillitt took home top honors for first singles, defeating Park City’s Livi Rockwood in a rematch of their three-set final matchup at state in 2016, which Tillitt won. On Saturday, Tillitt won in two sets, winning the match 6-2, 6-3. In second singles, Region 11's No. 1 seed Gabby Rockwood, who had not lost a single set throughout the draw, defeated Desert Hills’ Faith Hess 6-2, 6-2. In third singles, Park City’s Taylor Matz defeated Orem’s Aspen Jones, winning 7-6 (5), 6-3.
“The most clutch (performance) was Taylor Matz, our senior. She was playing a girl (Aspen Jones of Orem) that she went 1-1 throughout the season, and they were both big battles,” Nicholas said. “It was really nice to see her come through with a victory in her senior year.”
Logan’s Heather Roskelley and Cambrie Anderson, the No. 2 seeds from Region 12, made an upset run to take the first doubles crown. In the final, Roskelley and Anderson defeated Emily Pehrson and Ali Wolford of Ridgeline 6-4, 6-3. In second doubles, Desert Hills’ Tia Turley and Lyndsi Graf played their first three-set match of the state tournament. After falling behind 4-6, Turley and Graf rallied to win the next sets 6-0 and 6-2.
Livi Rockwood, Park City, def. Morgan Behymer, Desert Hills, 6-0, 6-2
Naya Tillitt, Ridgeline, def. Kendra Hancock, Payson, 6-0, 6-2
Naya Tillitt, Ridgeline, def. Livi Rockwood, Park City, 6-2, 6-3
Faith Hess, Desert Hills, def. Mimi Bowman, Orem, 6-4, 7-5
Gabby Rockwood, Park City, def. Sydney DeGraw, Payson, 6-1, 6-0
Gabby Rockwood, Park City, def. Faith Hess, Desert Hills, 6-2, 6-2
Aspen Jones, Orem, def. Mackinzie Telford, Desert Hills, 6-3, 6-1
Taylor Matz, Park City, def. Lucy Lyons, Ridgeline, 6-1, 6-1
Taylor Matz, Park City, def. Aspen Jones, Orem, 7-6 (5), 6-3
Heather Roskelley/Cambrie Anderson, Logan, def. Brooklyn Thompson/Emme Phillips, Park City, 6-4, 6-2.
Emily Pehrson/Ali Wolford, Ridgeline, def. Ali Greer/Abby Dunn, Orem, 1-6, 6-3, 7-5
Heather Roskelley/Cambrie Anderson, Logan, def. Emily Pehrson/Ali Wolford, Ridgeline, 6-4, 6-3
Tia Turley/Lyndsi Graf, Desert Hills, def. Erica Allen/Tessa Clayson, Spanish Fork, 6-3, 6-2
Isabel Adams/Gabby Bailey, Orem, def. Erin Case/Amelia Jorgensen, Park City, 6-4, 2-6, 6-1
Tia Turley/Lyndsi Graf, Desert Hills, def. Isabel Adams/Gabby Bailey, Orem, 4-6, 6-0, 6-2