There was pressure on Western Hills’ Henry Collett going into his quarterfinal match at the Region 8 tennis tournament, knowing a victory would mean a trip to the state tournament.
Once the match started, the pressure increased.
“I put a little pressure on myself when I realized he was a lot better than when I played him last time,” Collett said after his 6-3, 6-4 victory over North Oldham’s John Newton Tuesday at the Franklin County High School courts.
With the victory Collett earned a spot in the tournament semifinals, where he’ll play No. 2 seed Cameron Mount of South Oldham today at 4:30 p.m. at FCHS.
In the other semifinal will be top-seeded Jordan Pitts of South Oldham and Bullitt East’s Hunter Norris, the No. 4 seed.
Reaching the semifinals guarantees all four players berths in the state tournament, which will be next week at the University of Kentucky.
Collett faced a familiar foe Tuesday, having played Newton once during the regular season. Collett, the No. 3 seed in the tournament, won that match 6-3, 6-1. Newton was seeded sixth.
“It wasn’t as close as this match,” Collett said. “Last time we were both sick. He was a lot more consistent than I remember, and he has a nice flat forehand that I don’t do well with. He’s a good player.
“I couldn’t put the ball away for the life of me. He had a floating shot that I couldn’t put away.”
That made the match a bit of a struggle for Collett.
“It was mental errors,” he said, “and I was frustrated. It was good shot selection, poor execution.”
Now Collett faces Mount. They’ve played against each other before but not this season.
“It’ll be a tough match,” Collett said. “I have my work cut out for me.”
Mount reached the semifinals with a 6-0, 6-1 win over seventh-seeded Ethan Russell of Shelby County.
In the other singles quarterfinals Tuesday, Pitts defeated Spencer County’s James Mouser 6-0, 6-0, and Norris defeated Oldham County’s Nathan Geil, the No. 5 seed, 2-6, 6-1, 1-0 (6).
Three of the top four seeds advanced to the doubles semifinals today. Top-seeded Seth Wallace and David Kline of North Oldham will play fifth-seeded Derek Stivers and Cy Dutton of Collins, and South Oldham’s Dawson Bezehertny and Tony Liu, the No. 3 seed, will take on second-seeded Doug Martin and Jeron Russell of Shelby County.