On Saturday and Sunday, October 15th and 16th, the Fossil Ridge Tennis team went down to the Gates Tennis Center in Denver to compete in the in the annual 5A boys tennis state tournament. With the sabercats ending the weekend in fifth place.
Above all the players on the team that competed in the name of Fossil that weekend, a young, ambidextrous freshman from Liberty high school, Akhil Gupta finished his singles bracket in first place. This gave Gupta and Fossil a win for a section of the state tournament.
Both Liberty high school and Ridgeview high school are apart of Fossils tennis team.
The first round consisted of Gupta playing against a senior from Overland, Henry Vice.
Vice was an easy competitor for Gupta. With Gupta allowing one serve to slip past him, he ended the first round with an easy victory, 6-1 in the first set and 6-0 in the second. Allowing Gupta to progress further in his bracket.
The quarter finals consisted of Gupta facing off against sophomore from Grand Junction, Luke Aubert.
Much like Vice and Gupta’s match during the first round, this game was very similar, only giving one point to Aubert and leaving Gupta with another easy win, ending the match 6-0 in the first set, and 6-1 in the second. Gupta was now halfway to earning the State title. “These two matches were relatively easy for me, but both of the players showed determination which I appreciated and respected.”
The Semi finals had Gupta squared up with freshman from Cherry Creek, Alex Gordon.
This match was less forgiving as the past ones that weekend due to it being a more difficult match for Gupta to win. Historically, Cherry Creek is known for winning most of the tournaments they are in. However, determination gave Gupta the strength to give Gordon his all. The first set ended 7-5, giving Gupta a close shave win, and a little heart attack as well, “I felt like if I dropped anymore
serves, I would’ve lost the set” reclaimed Gupta. The second set went better for Gupta, only allowing Gordon 2 points, ending the match 6-2 in the second set. “He would play really well” replied Gupta, “Gordon would make a lot of errors which ultimately cost him the match.”
The finalist from Denver East was the only thing standing in Gupta’s way of winning his state bracket.
Senior from Denver East, Bryce Viorst proved to be a tough opponent to Gupta. Winning against Regis Jesuit and Fairview. However, in a startling surprise, Gupta was anything but intimidated by Viorst. Viorst was no match for Gupta, giving him an easy bracket win for the sabercats, ending the first set 6-1 and 6-2 in the second. Gupta was now the final victor of the state’s third singles match bracket.
Overall Fossil scored a total of 24 points in the state tournament making our team fifth in the state for tennis. Gupta scoring 15 out of the total score. Gupta replied with, “I would not have gotten that score if it wasn’t for my fellow teammates cheering me on. I wouldn’t play for any other team than this one.”
Fossil’s tennis season might be done for this year, but realizing that Gupta is only a freshmen gives the sabercats a promising future for the next season.