A different-looking Ty Gentry showed up for the Class 2A state boys tennis tournament Friday.
His flowing hair was gone, replaced by a neatly trimmed mohawk style.
“Have to have a little more aerodynamics,” Gentry said.
The two-time defending 2A singles champion from Tumwater flew through the first day, losing two games in four sets to reach the state semifinals for a fourth consecutive year.
Premium content for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
Gentry, a University of Oregon signee, will face Olympic’s Tye Loane in a Saturday morning semifinal at the Nordstorm Tennis Center in Seattle. Renton’s Oscar Cruz will play Sehome’s Max Shmotolokha in the other semifinal.
“He looks really confident, for the most part,” Tumwater coach Jim Click said of Gentry. “He struggled with his serve a little bit, but it ended up being very strong.”
Click was referring to Gentry’s quarterfinal match against Lindbergh’s Jeremiah Bayna. In the first game, Bayna broke Gentry’s serve.
Gentry broke right back and won the next six games to take the first set, 6-1. He won the second set by the same score.
“(Bayna) was a good player,” Gentry said. “It was real important for me to see the bigger ball (on the indoor court), which is a higher-level tennis ball. I have now seen it, so there should be no problems tomorrow.”
The 4A Narrows had two boys doubles teams reach the state semifinals.
One team is Bellarmine Prep’s Joe Lyon and Kane Vu. They did not drop a set in advancing to a Saturday matchup against touted Derek Huang and Travis Kayahara of Bellevue’s Newport.
Before the tournament, Lyon spent Tuesday and Wednesday helping the Lions’ golf team defend its 4A title.
“If anybody can do it, it is Joe Lyon,” Bellarmine Prep coach Dick Snyder said.
And on the other side of the draw is Stadium’s Garrett Merz and Black Wilcox, the West Central District champions. They had to survive a three-set quarterfinal thriller — 6-1, 2-6, 6-4 — against Issaquah’s Derek Chao and Kobe Sarusaud.
“We just talked about getting fired up and enthusiastic,” Stadium coach Cara Moore said. “We got out to a 3-0 lead (in the final) set in 10 minutes.”
In girls singles at the Columbia Basin Racquet Club in Richland, Timberline’s Angela Schuster won her two matches, and is in the state semifinals for the first time.
She defeated Mountain View’s Amila Gogalija in the quarterfinals, 6-4, 6-2.
Rarely do matches get so heated that line judges are called.
But that is what happened to Charles Wright Academy’s Griffin Welsh in his state boys singles quarterfinal against Cashmere’s Tyler Kert.
After splitting the first two sets, and tied 2-2 in the final set, Welsh said he hit a crosscourt winner that was obviously in — but Kert called out.
Welsh called for help, then won the next eight points to take control. He won the match, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4.
“It helped refocus me,” Welsh said. “And it made him tense up a bit.”
With Tyler Sam and Dylan Sam alive in the doubles bracket, the Tarriers are aiming for another team crown.
CLASS 1A/2B/1B TRACK
There were no individual winners Friday at Eastern Washington University, but a lot of close calls.
The biggest surprise came out of the 1A boys triple jump. Cascade Christian’s Leighton Lanier, who was the last seed to get into the meet, jumped a personal-best 44-5 1/4 to finish third. Royal’s Joe Lang won it at 44-8 1/2.
Evergreen Lutheran’s Brett Henning racked up a third-place finish in the 1B javelin (154-2).
In the 2B girls triple jump, Northwest Christian junior Heidi Sowers was second at 34-7 1/2. Teammate Elizabeth Stottlemyre was the runner-up in the 2B girls javelin at 145-6.