Free State’s Keegan VanPelt finishes 4th at regionals to qualify for state meet

photo by: Chance Parker

Free State's Keegan VanPelt returns the ball Tuesday evening as they faced off against Lawrence High School at LHS on Sept. 29, 2020. The Firebirds won the city showdown by a score of 6-3.

Free State senior Keegan VanPelt will be heading back to the state girls tennis tournament.

VanPelt finished fourth in singles play Saturday afternoon at the 6A regional meet at Gardner-Edgerton. VanPelt, who took fourth at the state meet a year ago, was the lone local player to punch her ticket to the final meet this season.

As the No. 3 seed in the singles bracket, VanPelt started things off by defeating the No. 14 seed from Blue Valley Northwest (6-1, 6-1) in the opening round. VanPelt then bested No. 11 seed from Blue Valley West (6-1, 6-2) to advance to the semifinals.

VanPelt then had to default her remaining two matches due to a wrist injury.

Free State’s doubles tandem of Dayna Steadman and Maya Lee won their opening-round matchup against Blue Valley West (6-2, 6-1) before falling in the semifinals (6-1, 6-1) to Blue Valley North. Emma Evans and Olivia Evans were eliminated in the opening round for the Firebirds.

Lawrence High’s duo of Bella Kirkwood and Ryleigh Leon dropped their first and only match in the opening round. Lili Derby and Laura Teska were eliminated in their first doubles match as well. Abby Marsh and Katie Logan also dropped their respective opening-round matches in singles.

The Class 6A state tournament is slated to take place at the College Boulevard Activity Center next weekend.


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