116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
IOWA CITY - Allison Jasper looked around and found herself right back where she was a year ago.
A year after a three-set quarterfinal singles loss in the Class 1A girls' tennis state tournament, the Cedar Rapids Xavier junior was trailing Le Mars' Emily Ahlers in a back-and-forth first set before deciding this quarterfinal would not be like the last one.
Jasper, the No. 4 seed, rallied to win four of the set's final five games and cruised through the second for a 6-4, 6-0 victory Thursday at the Hawkeye Tennis and Recreation Complex.
'I found a groove,” Jasper said. 'I think I just tried to spin the ball a little more, tried to be more consistent, move her around a little bit and I think it worked.”
Jasper has little time to savor her personal milestone. She faces top-seeded and defending state champion Haley Resnick of Davenport Assumption in Friday's semifinals.
'It should be a good match,” Jasper said. 'I am going to try and keep the ball in ... try and keep my serves going. They've been on point today.”
Jasper dispatched Ballard's Emily Jurgensen, 6-1, 6-2, in the first round.
The day did not hold the same good fortune for Xavier teammate Kylie DeWees. A 2-week-old lower back injury flared up on the senior during a laborious 6-4 first set against Emma Rose of Boone in the first round. With the Saints still alive for Saturday's Class 1A team state championship, Xavier Coach Matt Foxhoven left the decision up to DeWees on whether or not to continue.
'I said, ‘How do you feel about this? Would you rather go far in singles or team?,'” Foxhoven said. 'She said team. She's all team so you've got to like that about her. Hopefully, she can bounce back for Saturday.”
SMALL WINS BIG
At the Class 2A state tournament in Ames, top-seeded Eve Small of Iowa City High easily advanced to the semifinals with two wins, surrendering only three games in four sets. Cedar Rapids Kennedy's Jessica Pedersen also won twice - thanks to a 6-1, 6-4 quarterfinal upset of third-seeded Kayla Kuethe of Waukee.
Another No. 3 seed fell in doubles when Cedar Rapids Prairie's Vale and Magui Caro posted a quarterfinal win over last season's state runners-up from Cedar Rapids Washington, Lilly Hartman and Rina Moore, 6-3, 0-6, 6-3. Awaiting the Caro sisters in today's semifinals are Megan Jans and Brittani Langland of Iowa City West, quarterfinal winners over another seeded duo, Urbandale No. 2 seeds Abby Reis and Brynn Reichardt, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.
Semifinals and consolation play begins at 10 a.m. today in both classes.