This is what they expected all along.
Even though they got a rematch of last year’s Class 4A Region 6 finals, the Cheyenne Mountain and Air Academy boys’ tennis teams both knew they had to stay focused on their matches Thursday at Memorial Park Tennis Center. At the same time, the outcome wasn’t necessarily surprising.
All of this year’s regional finals matches will feature players from both programs again as the showdown is scheduled to begins 7:30 a.m. Friday at the Tennis Center. To reach this point, all of the Cheyenne Mountain and Air Academy singles and doubles players won in straight sets Thursday.
Cheyenne Mountain’s Joey Geisz plays Air Academy’s Josh Voss in No. 1 singles final, and Air Academy’s Connor Campbell and Cheyenne Mountain’s Paul Jones, and Air Academy’s Harry Huthoefer and Cheyenne Mountain’s Christian Ridings face off at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively.
Cheyenne Mountain and Air Academy have been here before.
In 2016, the Indians captured the regional title after narrowly defeating Air Academy 4-3 as both teams earned enough points to advance to the state tournament. Both teams expect another close meeting at this year’s tournament finals.
On Sept. 19, the Indians beat the Kadets in a dual match but Cheyenne Mountain coach Dave Adams said the final tally was deceiving.
“We had a lot of close matches, a couple three-set matches,” he said. “It really could have gone either way. We won the match 5-2 but we could have lost it 4-3.”
On Thursday, both teams were dominant. One example was in the No. 2 doubles bracket, where the Air Academy duo of Ahyo Falick and Justin Brand shut out their opponents from Vanguard and Widefield in the first and second rounds. Cheyenne Mountain’s duo of Michael Dashiell and Grant Leap went through their four sets in similar fashion, allowing just one point.
Still, the Indians said they don’t believe they have the upper hand just because of what happened in the past.
“From one time to the next, things can change a lot,” Adams said. “We’re going to focus on playing our best tennis.”
Organizers said they hope that Friday’s early start will give players enough time to play because of a weather forecast that includes possible showers and thunderstorms coming through in the afternoon.