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The Sun-Times - Heber Springs, AR
  • Gilbrech strong in opener

  • Left-handed Heber Springs junior Katherine Gilbrech has a soothing grace to her game, gliding across the court making swift plays with relative ease.
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  • Left-handed Heber Springs junior Katherine Gilbrech has a soothing grace to her game, gliding across the court making swift plays with relative ease.
    In Thursday’s season-opening match at Red Apple, Gilbrech was already on top of her game as the two-time defending 2-4A Conference champion defeated Clinton’s top player 6-0.
    “As a freshman, Katherine won conference and qualified for state, advancing to second round,” said Heber Springs Tennis Coach Lesli Thomas. “Last year as a sophomore, Katherine won conference and was third in state earning her All-State honors.  
    “Katherine is dedicated to be even better this year. She is working towards another conference title and a state title. She serves as a leader for the team and HSHS, where she is a member of various organizations, including cheer and student council. Katherine maintains extremely high academics as well. She is a wonderful role model for the students athletes,” added Thomas.
    Overall, Clinton won the girls match as a team 4-3 on Thursday , sweeping all four doubles matches in the girls’ division. Heber’s Emily Forrest and Ashynn Garrett fel to Clinton’s top tandem of McKnight and Blanton by a score of 1-6. Forrest and Garrett also dropped a match to Clinton’s Souzar and Coats 1-6.
    McKnight and Blanton later defeated Gilbrech and Lauren Lynch, 4-6.  Also in doubles, Clinton’s duo of Qualls and Hansby defeated Heber’s Lynea Cutshall and Lauren Duncan, 0-6.
    Heber won all three girls singles matches, including Gilbrech’s sweep of McKnight. Lynch defeated Souzar, 6-1, and Cutshall topped Qualls, 3-1.
    The two rivals tied in the boys’ match as Heber’s Noah Patton defeated Crabtree 6-3 and Seth Jenkins beat Regan McGaha 6-3, while Rhyder McGaha edged Grant Childers 6-8.
    In the decisive doubles match, Clinton pulled out a 2-2 match tie with Treece and Bradley defeating Childers and Patton, 3-6.
    After another match versus Clinton at Fairfield Bay Tuesday, Heber heads to Stuttgart on Monday, Sept. 8.

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