Park Hill tennis romps past NKC, earns 3rd straight playoff berth

ROSS MARTIN/Citizen photo Park Hill sophomore Cooper Hayes hits a serve during the Class 2 District 16 championship dual with North Kansas City on Thursday, April 11 at Barry Park in Kansas City, Mo.

ROSS MARTIN/Citizen photo
Park Hill sophomore Cooper Hayes hits a serve during the Class 2 District 16 championship dual with North Kansas City on Thursday, April 11 at Barry Park in Kansas City, Mo.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Park Hill didn’t lose a match on the way to earning another Class 2 District 16 title.

In the championship match, the Trojans swept the three doubles matches and then secured a 5-0 victory against North Kansas City with two quick singles wins Thursday, May 11 at Barry Park. They move on to Class 2 sectional team play for a third straight year still seeking the first semifinal appearance in program history.

Park Hill reached the Class 2 quarterfinals last season and has five seniors in this year’s lineup.
In the semifinal two days earlier, Park Hill defeated St. Joseph Central 5-0, advancing to meet the No. 3-seeded Hornets in the title dual. The Trojans’ No. 2 and 3 teams of Cooper Hayes and Chandler To and Matt Zhang and Ryan Decker quickly won 8-1 for the early lead.

After having serve broken in the first game, Park Hill’s No. 1 team of Jake McFee and Grant Martin came back for an 8-5 victory.

To (6-0, 6-0) and Zhang (6-1, 6-2) were winners for the Trojans at No. 4 and No. 5 in singles to finish the dual. McFee (No. 1), Martin (No. 3) and Decker (No. 6) all won first sets but didn’t complete their matches, while Hayes was tied 5-5 at No. 2.

Previously, Park Hill had not seen North Kansas City this season outside of tournament play. The Hornets entered with just one loss, having avenged that defeat with a district semifinal win over Platte County two days earlier.

ROSS MARTIN/Citizen photo Park Hill senior Grant Martin hits a backhand volley during a doubles match in the Class 2 District 16 championship match Thursday, May 11 at Barry Park in Kansas City, Mo.

ROSS MARTIN/Citizen photo
Park Hill senior Grant Martin hits a backhand volley during a doubles match in the Class 2 District 16 championship match Thursday, May 11 at Barry Park in Kansas City, Mo.

Park Hill improved to 16-4 overall and advances to play District 15 champion Liberty in a Class 2 sectional to be played either Friday, May 19 or Saturday, May 20. Liberty (17-2) won the first matchup between the two this season 5-4 back on March 23.

The winner of the sectional dual will play later the same day in the quarterfinals against the winner of Rockhurst (District 13 champion) and Blue Springs South (District 14 champion). Park Hill lost 7-2 to Rockhurst and 6-3 to Blue Springs South in matchups this season.

The state bracket had not been released as of Tuesday’s deadline.