Panthers beat Trojans in district championships

Park Hill South advanced to the state playoffs for the second year in a row and only the fifth time in school history on Thursday, May 9 at Barry Park.

Submitted photo The Park Hill South doubles teams both advanced from the Class 2 Districts 16 tournament to sectionals.

Submitted photo
The Park Hill South doubles teams both advanced from the Class 2 Districts 16 tournament to sectionals.

The Panthers got a 5-2 win against rival Park Hill to knock off the No. 1 seed and extract revenge from a loss in a match earlier this season in the Class 2 District 16 playoffs.

Park Hill South (9-3) took an early lead in doubles play against the Trojans (12-3).

Cooper Hayes and Andrew Robaska won 8-2 at No. 1 doubles against Park Hill’s Tommy Matthys and Blake Harris. At No. 2 doubles, the Panthers secured a win from Michael Verhoeven and Garrett Lee, 9-7, against Trey Safford and Griffin Koski.

Vince Gelbolinga and Evan Ericksen earned Park Hill’s first win at No. 3 doubles. The duo won 8-4 against Adam Henn and Charlie Scott.

Park Hill’s only other win came from Ericksen, a three-set win against Henn, 6-3, 4-6 and 6-2.

Robaska won a 6-4 and 6-3 win against Safford at No. 2 single. Verhoeven won in final two sets, 6-4 and 6-2 to rally for a win against Gelbolinga, who won 6-2 in the first set at No. 3 singles.

Scott secured a two-set win against Koski at No. 6 singles, winning 7-6 and 7-5, getting a tiebreaking win in the first set. 

The matches at No. 1 and No. 4 singles were not finished. 

The Panthers will play Liberty (17-3) in the first round of the Class 2 playoffs on at 3:30 p.m. Friday, May 17 at the Plaza Tennis Center in Kansas City. The winner will face the Rockhurst/Blue Springs South winner in the quarterfinals later that day. 


Park Hill South had two doubles teams and Park Hill had a singles player competing on Tuesday, May 14 at the individual sectional tournament at Liberty North. Results were not available by press time. 

Park Hill South’s Cooper Hayes and Andrew Robaska won 6-1 and 6-1 against teammates Michael Verhoeven and Garrett Lee in the doubles championship held on Saturday, May 11 in the Class 2 District 16 District at Platte County High School.

In singles, Staley’s Mason Gates got a 6-2 and 6-4 win against Park Hill’s Tommy Matthys for the other district championship. Matthys draws the district champion from District 15.

Park Hill’s Trey Safford beat Platte County’s Trenton Percival, 8-6, for third place in singles. Park Hill’s double team of Vince Gelbolinga and Evan Ericksen reached the third-place match. 


Park Hill 5, Platte County 1

The Trojans got wins at No. 4, 5 and 6 singles to put away Platte County in a match on Wednesday, May 8 at Barry Park.

Park Hill received straight set wins from Blake Harris, Evan Ericksen and Griffin Koski to end the match early. Harris dispatched Baxter Stone 6-3 and 6-2, while Ericksen won 6-3 and 7-5 against Braulio Escamilla. Koski posted a 6-3 and 6-1 win against Brennen Lee.

Park Hill’s Trey Safford and Koski won 8-2 against Dawson Wood and Brennan Lee at No. 2 doubles, while Vince Gelbolinga and Ericksen won 8-2 against Stone and Escamilla.

The lone win for the Pirates came from Trenton Percival and Isaac Cook, 8-6, against Tommy Matthys and Harris.

The Pirates finished the season at 7-7.

Park Hill South 5, Staley 0

The Panthers got a win against the Falcons in the other semifinal match, held on Wednesday, May 8 at Clayview Country Club in Kansas City.

Cooper Hayes, Andrew Robaska, Gavin Lee, Michael Verhoeven and Charles Scott all won their singles matches. Singles were played first due to threat of rain later in the day.