Jordan advances to regional semifinals with win over Lake Creek

By Tyler Tyre, Times Sports Editor
Posted 10/19/21

“I think it’s crazy how far we’ve come, being such a young school,” said Avery McKay. “Some of the other teams get surprised by how good we play and I think that’s to our advantage. Being able to come out on top like this and make it to the regional tournament, it feels really good.”

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Jordan advances to regional semifinals with win over Lake Creek

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Aneesh Melachuri knows Jordan is still a new high school.

So, he and his teammates are working as hard as they can to create a lasting legacy of success when it comes to the school’s tennis program.

That started this year when in the schools second year the tennis program won a District 19-5A championship and going on a playoff run.

“We know this is a new school and we realize that we’re setting the tone for the rest of Jordan Athletics in Katy ISD,” Mleachuri said. “We just want to set a good example with the Jordan tennis program and then we can continue the legacy.”

Jordan rolled through their first two rounds of the playoff, getting to the regional quarterfinals where they faced a match against Lake Creek, a rematch from earlier in the season which Jordan won as a team. But the Warriors knew this would be a tougher test in the playoffs.

“We knew that we couldn’t underestimate them” Melachuri said. “We may have beat them before, but we can’t let that effect how we play. We had to go out today and keep fighting and keep trying until the end. We knew we couldn’t give them anything because if we gave an inch they’d take a mile.”

Jordan came out on top Tuesday at the Jordan tennis courts, beating the Lions 10-6 to advance to the Region III Tournament.

“I think it’s crazy how far we’ve come, being such a young school,” said Avery McKay. “Some of the other teams get surprised by how good we play and I think that’s to our advantage. Being able to come out on top like this and make it to the regional tournament, it feels really good.”

Jordan was able to take a slim lead coming out of doubles, as the Warriors were up 4-3. That slight lead would be enough as Jordan won six matches to Lake Creeks three in singles to take the victory.

Doubles is something Jordan has been working on all year and setting the tone by taking the lead early was a key for the team.

“We knew coming out that they would mix things up from the last time we saw them. That’s exactly what they did and it got us off our rhythm.,” said Jordan head coach Tyler Esterline. “We had to fight back in a lot of those doubles matches as well but knew that doubles is what’s won it for us all year long and we had to come out winning at least 4-3. That’s what they were able to do. The kids have been something special this year.”

McKay lost her doubles match but bounced back to win a big ninth point for the Warriors in her singles match before Melachuri’s tenth point secured the teams victory.

“It’s two different games,” McKay said. “With doubles you have your partner and when you mess up it’s a team effort. If you lose you just have to find it in yourself to win singles. You just have to go out there thinking you can do it.”

Making to the regional tournament is a goal achieved for the team and shows the type of culture that Esterline has built with the program.

“We’ve been trying to build that from the ground up and it’s really fun because not many coaches get to start a school,” Esterline said. “We have a rule that in a team match, no one can leave until everyone is done with their match. The kids have really bought into it and they go and they pick each other up when they aren’t playing and it’s just been really good.”

Jordan will take on the winner of Richmond Foster and Baytown Sterling in the regional semifinal round, and the Warriors don’t feel like they’re done yet.

“We have practice tomorrow and were going to take it day by day,” Melachuri said. “We want to win a state championship, but we have to make it there so we just have to stay focused and deal with whatever team is on the other side of the bracket.

Jordan 10, Lake Creek 6

Boys doubles

Melachuri/ Rivas def. Ramirez/ Koesters 6-4, 6-4

Rajagopalan/Vierling def. Pugh/Bell 6-1, 6-2

Galloway/Velderrain def. Street/Randall 3-6, 6-2, 10-6

Girls doubles

Pugh/Pugh def. Hari/Ashton 7-5, 6-0

Yang/Shandilya def. Silver/Mulis, 7-6, 6-0

Englishbee/Lyness def. McKay/Antelo 6-3, 6-3

Mixed Doubles

Freund/Kennett def. Guzman/Boinpalli 6-4, 6-2

Boys Singles

Freund def. Rivas 2-6, 6-2, 10-7

Rajagopalan def. Ramirez 6-3, 7-5

Koesters def. Vierling 6-4, 7-6

Galloway def. Street 6-X, 6-3

Melachuri def. Bell 6-1, 6-2

Girls Singles

  1. Pugh def. K Hari 3-6, 6-1, 10-8

R Hari def. M. Pugh 6-4, 6-7, 10-6

Yang def. Silver 6-4, 6-1

McKay def. Mullis 7-5, 6-3

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