For the Fillies, playing cross-county school Powell is a good local rivalry. For the Broncs it’s a tough match-up.
Even though Tuesday’s meet-up was a non-conference affair – the conference match is next Thursday in Powell – there’s still one goal.
“Our coach says, ‘We’re playing Powell, so we can’t lose,” No. 2 doubles player T.J. Smith said.
The Cody girls tennis team (7-0) accomplished the goal, with a 5-0 sweep at the Cody Tennis Complex, while the boys (5-2) fell 4-1 despite some close, long matches.
The Fillies’ main rival is not local – conference foe Kelly Walsh, the other team always vying for the conference crown and a top-three state contender along with Cody.
“It should come down, again, among Cheyenne Central, Casper Kelly Walsh and Cody Fillies for the state crown,” coach Norm Sedig said.
On the big stage Powell is not the enemy.
“When we go to state we’re usually pretty friendly, we cheer each other on,” said No. 3 doubles player Soffy Anderson, who won her match alongside Nathalia Morales 6-2, 6-3.
But on Tuesday there was competition.
Smith and teammate Tristan Dollard lost one of those close boys matches, a 6-3, 6-4 defeat to Grant Dillivan and Ethan Bartholomew.
The Broncs didn’t let up despite falling behind.
“I feel like you have a different mentality after losing the first set,” Dollard said. “If you lose, you’re focused on really winning each point.”
One of the toughest matches of the night kept Fillies’ No. 2 singles player Torrie Schutzman off the court until after 7 p.m. as Broncs No. 2 singles player Jackson Golden defeated his opponent in three sets.
At a little more than two hours in length the 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 decision was Golden’s second-longest match of the year. He said in the first set newly appointed Powell No. 2 singles player Justin Vanderbeek, an exchange student from Belgium, was serving well and squeaked by.
“I knew I had been doing pretty well, I knew eventually I’d be able to break him,” Golden said.
He did, and after another tight second set, Golden went into the final set on fire.
“I was serving the best I’d served all season,” he said. “I was able to force him into some long rallies on his serves and I got him on a couple of breaks.”
The 6-1 third-set salvaged one match win against a tough Powell squad sporting an undefeated No. 1 singles player in Jesse Brown.
Cody is also still working out No. 1 doubles and currently Solomon Stewart is out with a likely pinched nerve, although Sedig expects him back within the week.
In the second half of the day it was the Fillies playing the juggernaut.
No match went more than two sets and the No. 1 doubles team of Maddy Icenogle and Simona Wambeke lost just one game in their win.
It was the Cody girls team’s seventh win in seven dual matches within a week to start the season. The Fillies have won 35 matches.
“It’s like we played half the season in one week,” Anderson said.
“It was insane,” Morales added.
But it was a week capped by a rivalry win, even if one Filly, a transfer from Tennessee, was still figuring the rivalry out.
“Definitely we had a rivalry in Tennessee,” Ashlynn Staggs said. “They were always the team to beat at regionals.”
Morales knows when the equivalent rival for Cody comes to town – the Fillies host Kelly Walsh on Sept. 14.
Before that, Cody next plays Friday at Jackson.
Sedig said that could be another good test for the Fillies.
Fillies 5, Powell 0
No. 1 singles: Teagan Thompson def. Sloane Asay 6-1, 6-2
No. 2 singles: Torrie Schutzman def. Ashley Dunkerley 6-2, 6-4
No. 1 doubles: Maddy Icenogle and Simona Wambeke def. Hailee Paul and Sophe Morrow 6-1, 6-0
No. 2 doubles: Anna Brenner and Ashlynn Staggs def. Sami Cole and Sydenee Thompson 6-1, 6-3
No. 3 doubles: Soffy Anderson and Nathalia Morales def. Whitney Hull and Kaili Wisniewski 6-1, 6-3
Alternate doubles: Sage Crofts and Tashi Mathuin def. Chase Anderson and Lila Asay 7-5, 6-4
Powell 4, Broncs 1
No. 1 singles: Cody Champlin lost to Jesse Brown 6-0, 6-0
No. 2 singles: Jackson Golden def. Justin Vanderbeek 4-6, 6-4, 6-1
No. 1 doubles: Dillon Romero and Hayden DeMaranville lost to Aidan Jacobsen and Dylan Preator 6-4, 6-2
No. 2 doubles: Tristan Dollard and TJ Smith lost to Grant Dillivan and Ethan Bartholomew 6-3, 6-4
No. 3 doubles: CJ Dominick and Mitchel Schwab lost to Jay Cox and Logan Brown 6-4, 6-1
Alternate doubles: Tade Geving and Ian Townsend lost to Aiden Chandler and Kolt Flores 6-1, 6-3