CHS TENNIS: Clovis sends two to state

Freedom Newspapers: Kevin Wilson Clovis freshman Heather Trujillo leaps to return a shot from Hobbs’ Torie Murdock in their Friday’s District 4-5A girls singles semifinal. Trujillo won 6-2, 6-3 and placed second in the tournament.

By Dave Wagner: CNJ sports writer

Already assured a trip to state, Clovis freshman Heather Trujillo went for the whole ball of wax on Friday.

Trujillo, a Yucca Junior High student who is legally deaf and coming off a concussion sustained less than two weeks ago, put together a solid day to reach the singles finals in District 4-5A tennis competition at CHS.

She came up short, losing to top-seeded Tamara Erdinger of Carlsbad 6-4, 6-2, but she was more than happy with the way things went.

“It was amazing,” Trujillo said. “I played very hard. The girl (Erdinger) was really good.

“It was tough. Since I had my concussion, I’d had about a week off (from practice).”

Trujillo, seeded second, defeated Megan Harmeson of Carlsbad 6-3, 6-2 and third-seeded Tori Murdock of Hobbs 6-2, 6-3 to reach the finals. The top three finishers in singles and doubles advance to state competition May 11-12 in Albuquerque.

Trujillo said she was able to relax a little after securing the state trip.

“I was nervous in my first match,” she said. “But I had confidence (going into) the finals.”

Clovis’ boys will send senior Marlon Wright, who finished third in singles. No team scores were kept.

CHS girls coach Billie Merritt said she thought Trujillo may have been a bit fatigued against Erdinger, a German exchange student. But she said Trujillo put forth a strong effort.

“I’m really pleased at how Heather played in the final match,” Merritt said. “She played great tennis.

“I think Heather was a little bit tired from not being able to practice much, but she did really great.”

Wright bounced back from a 6-3, 6-2 to second-seeded and eventual champion Michael Ongaga of Carlsbad in the semifinals for a 6-0, 6-3 win over the Cavemen’s Chris Bailey.

“I had to keep my groundstrokes deep and learn how to use control,” Wright said of the finale. “I felt a little nervous because of the pressure (to try to qualify).”

Hobbs and Carlsbad opted to go stronger in doubles and, ostensibly, that helped both Trujillo and Wright, who have been Clovis’ top players most of the season.

CHS boys coach Dan Replogle said Wright pretty much took care of business against Bradley, Carlsbad’s No. 5 player.

“To be honest, it was a match he should’ve won,” Replogle said. “Coach Baker (Paul, of Hobbs) and coach Galindo (Ryan, of Carlsbad) shocked the heck out of me by playing their top players in doubles.”

Doubles champions were Josh Baker and Adam Pennell of Hobbs for the boys and Angelica Madrid and Katie Harmeson of Carlsbad for the girls.