Evergreen tennis team places eighth in state tournament
By Gerardo Bolong
Michael and Cong Nguyen led a trio of Evergreen High School (White Center) players with an eighth place finish at the 2012 Class 2A state tennis tournament held at the Nordstrom Center on the campus of the University of Washington on May 25-26.
High drama and lengthy court time characterized the hard working pair's trail.
Evergreen's boys tandem started with a May 25 match up against Reed Welch and E.J. Troutman of Bellingham. The Red Raider duo punched to a first set 6-3 win, inspiring the Wolverines to adjust and ramp up the intensity and reverse the trend in a 6-3 second set victory.
With a berth in the next round of winners play at stake in the third set, both squads dug in their heels and refused to surrender as the set reached 6-6 and tie-breaker status. Much like the intensity shown before the tie-break, Evergreen and Bellingham forced each other to the brink of defeat. In the end, Welch and Troutman (who finished third) finally eked out a 7-5 tie-breaker win to force Nguyen and Nguyen into contentious loser-out matches in order to achieve state placing.
Later in the day, Evergreen rebounded with a strong 6-0, 6-2, domination of Grandview's Abel Pasillas and Stevan Ramirez to stay in the tournament.
One win away from earning state placement, Nguyen and Nguyen stroked into two sets of sheer warfare against Nick Gigstad and Jeremy Teske of Ellensburg. Neither would yield in the first set en route to a 6-6 draw and tie-breaker.
Down the line, across the court and down the alleys both teams hit shots with the Wolverines earning the tie-break win at 7-5.
In the second set, high level guts and intensity once again emerged before Evergreen pulled out a 7-6 (7-4) set and match win, gaining entrance to the fifth-eighth place match.
On Saturday, It took another three sets to determine the survivor of this hotly contested tussle. Kenny Saari and Cody Schultz of W.F. West (Chehalis) struggled past the White Center tandem 7-5 in the first set. Evergreen gained its second wind to bagel the Bearcats 6-0 in the second set, but Saari and Schultz turned the tables for a 6-1 third set.
Daniel Yu and Josh Rasmus of Washington High School claimed the doubles title.
In girls singles, Cecilia Vu of Evergreen experienced a much tougher view of the tournament. Bella Hoyos of Bellingham, who finished third, took down Vu, 6-1, 6-0, in the Friday opening round. Vu was trailing 6-1, to Hannah Adams of Pullman before having to retire ahead of the second set.
Tracy Landrum of Klahowya defeated Anna Lefebvre of Burlington Edison in the championship match.