Pusch Ridge squads pull off state title split - The Explorer: Sports

Pusch Ridge squads pull off state title split

Girls win 5-0, boys falter in semifinal match

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Posted: Tuesday, May 13, 2008 11:00 pm | Updated: 8:02 am, Thu Mar 24, 2011.

PHOENIX — With two doubles tennis titles stowed in an already-strained trophy case, Pusch Ridge Christian senior Jaime Shepherd reflected on the finer points of both her on-court partnerships, awaiting last Friday’s team semifinals match against Fountain Hills.

Oddly enough, it all came down to friendship for the amiable three-sport dynamo.

Both partners were “special.” But version 2.0 of the 2A/3A binary — now with fellow senior Mya Towne — was more so.

“We’ve been best friends since eighth grade, so it’s been really fun playing together this year,” Shepherd said. “I just think we’re a little bit closer as friends.”

Towne agreed that the point was to go out on top before college rolled around. Her maxim applied to the afternoons’ upcoming action, as well.

“I just want to get out there and play. I have no expectations or anything,” Towne said. “This is the last time I’m going to be playing high school tennis, so I kinda just want to play without any regrets.”

And so they played.

And so they wound up winning the semifinals.  

The next day, when Florence’s squad showed up — one player short with a five-girl roster— Pusch Ridge’s Lions beat the Gophers for the team title aided by match credits, in what coach David Towne called a particularly “anti-climactic” fashion.

“It was an awesome season — everything that we expected, and more,” Towne said, of the 5-0 victory. “Just a little odd at the end.”

Both Pusch Ridge’s girls (19-0) and boys (14-4) crews won regional titles and qualified nine total players for the state tournament.

But the boys’ squad hit a familiar rut — namely Phoenix Country Day School — during the team semifinals at Phoenix Tennis Center.

The Lions’ guys, who lamented their lack of solid competition leading up to the tournament’s final stages, lost their series 5-0.

Senior Derek Tilley, Jr. fell once again to his non-regional, red-headed nemesis, Patrick Taylor, in the top-seeded match.

“It’s hard to get used to him,” Tilley said. “If I could play with him, I could learn his style.”

Not that he’ll have time. Tilley, Jr. is headed for Marine Corps boot camp this summer, where he’s likely to have little contact with racquets.

Only one of his departing teammates on the ladies’ side, Towne, plans to play tennis collegiately.  

She’ll do so at Whitworth University, in Spokane, Wash.

Shepherd will focus on books when she attends Oklahoma Baptist University this fall.

After four straight state basketball titles, she’s giving the trophy case a break.

“My body’s kind of worn out from three high school sports,” Shpeherd said.

“I just want to focus on school and intramurals and have the college experience.”

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HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 16

Boys Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Buena, Cienega at Marana

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge, Catalina at Amphi (Silverbell GC)

Catalina Foothills, Pueblo, Sahuarita at Sahuaro

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Rio Rico

Ironwood Ridge at Glendale Ironwood

Swimming (@4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge, Sahuarita at Desert Christian

Wednesday, September 17

Girls Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Rincon at CDO

Ironwood Ridge, Desert View at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Cross Country (@4:30)

Salpointe at Catalina Foothills

Palo Verde, Nogales at Marana

Rincon, St. Gregory at CDO

Sahuarita, Pueblo, Pusch Ridge at Desert View

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Empire at Marana (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

CDO at Queen Creek

Cienega at Mountain View

Sahuaro at Catalina Foothills

Walden Grove at Pusch Ridge

Thursday, September 18

Girls Golf

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Boys Golf

Sahuaro and Salpointe at Ironwood Ridge

CDO, Rincon, Sunnyside at Tucson High

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at Sahuarita

Ironwood Ridge at Sahuaro (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

Catalina Foothills at Rincon

Pusch Ridge at San Manuel

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Marana vs. Tucson at Quincy Douglas Pool

Cienega at Marana

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Amphi

Catalina Foothills at Sahuaro

Freshman Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Flowing Wells at Marana (4 p.m.)

Desert View at Mountain View

Cienega at CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

JV Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Amphi at Marana

Santa Cruz Valley at Pusch Ridge

Mountain View at Desert View

CDO at Cienega

Buena at Ironwood Ridge

Sahuarita at Catalina Foothills

Friday, September 19

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge at Mt. Carmel Invitational (San Diego, CA)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

Football (@7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Santa Cruz Valley

Catalina at Marana

Desert Vista at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Cienega at CDO

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

Saturday, September 20

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Marana at Old Pueblo Invite(Lincoln Park)

Mountain View at San Diego

Catalina Foothills, CDO at Ojo Rojo (Chandler, AZ)

Swimming

Marana at Wolves Classic (Chandler High)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

 

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