The Norman Transcript

Sports

April 12, 2014

NHS’ tennis tandem a successful experiment

NORMAN — Russell Gehring and Max Gillett are used to winning. As singles players on the Norman High team, they’ve seen their share of success, and it’s always come on their own terms as they played in the singles bracket.

After Friday’s tournament at Westwood, that may change.

The pair played together as a doubles team for the first time, and it’s hard to imagine a better scenario. They scraped their way to a three-set victory in the championship round to take down the one doubles title.

“It was kind of an experiment to have them play together,” coach Kelly Stout said. “I’d say it went pretty well.”

Gillett played tennis competitively when he was in junior high, but left the sport behind in high school as he focused on other interests including football. But the senior decided to return to his childhood sport in his final year, and the results have been impressive. On Friday, Gillett and Gehring faced a difficult road to the title, including matches against more-experienced teams from Edmond Santa Fe and Byng.

But the pair came out on top every time, and more doubles matches may not be out of the question.

“We’ll see how it goes,” Stout said. “This may have convinced them. They’d do well at state in singles but I think they could do even better at doubles.”

Gehring and Gillett led NHS to a fourth-place finish at the tournament, and they were far from the only ones to have success. Led by a third-place finish in two singles by Blaine Pryor, Norman North finished fifth on the boys side.

In the girls’ tournament, NHS was led by Gabby Schreiner and Maggie Marcum, who finished second in one doubles. The Tigers finished fourth, while North finished fifth after an impressive performance from a young roster.

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