Expectations are rarely high for the first tennis meet of the season.
Walking away with a second-place finish at Saturday's Collegiate Classic was fine with defending City League champion Kapaun Mount Carmel girls coach Kathy Schulte.
"The best we've ever done at this particular tournament was third, and we had a good team that year," Schulte said. "This tournament is great because there are 5A and 6A teams so you get a nice slice of what's out there. For your top girls, it gives them great competition to improve their game."
Kapaun finished the day with 76 points, 13 shy of Blue Valley North. Bishop Carroll rounded out the top three with 59 points.
Junior Abby Stevens led the Crusaders with a second-place finish in the singles bracket.
Stevens went undefeated in her first three rounds and won an 8-7 tiebreaker in the semifinals against Blue Valley North junior Madison Rhyner.
With only a 20-minute break before the championship, Stevens showed signs of frustration in an 8-4 loss to Blue Valley senior Aubrey Coventry.
"I think she was a little fresher on her feet," Stevens said. "I've got to give her credit because she played really well."
Stevens said she struggled with her composure a bit in the final match.
"I get a little uptight but I think overall I played the way I wanted to," she said. "I wouldn't change anything besides winning that last one."
"She's a great athlete, but I'm sure (rest) had something to do with it," said Coventry, who had an hour between matches. "I was mentally and physically fresher."
Schulte also thought fatigue could have been a factor, but said it's something her players will have to get accustomed to if they want to compete in the postseason.
"It's this way through regionals and state. You have to be physically fit and ready to go," Schulte said. "I would love to have gotten her a little more rested up. I think it probably added to her frustration level."
Schulte also used the tournament to try out new doubles partners. Despite finishing fifth, a partnership that caught her eye was freshman Ali Schulte and senior Madeline Engle.
"I knew (Schulte) was a good player but when you put a freshman with a senior it's a whole new ballgame mentally," she said. "I don't think she was quite ready for the situation, but I was still impressed."
Team — Blue Valley North 89, Kapaun Mount Carmel 76, Bishop Carroll 59, Notre Dame de Sion (Mo.) 52, Collegiate 42, Maize 40, Blue Valley 39, BV Northwest 27, Arkansas City 26, BV Southwest 14, BV West 14, Wellington 10, Maize South 4, Collegiate G 2, Derby 0, Wichita Trinity 0,
Singles — First, Coventry, BV, def. Stevens, KMC, 8-4. Third, Rhyner, BVN, def. Schulte, KMC, 8-6,
Doubles — First, Flanagan-Fournier, BVN, def. O'Connor-Nogalski, ND, 8-2. Third, Sutton-Schultz, BVN, def. Lauer-Feldkamp, BC, 8-4.