At the advice of her tennis academy coaches, Olivia Sneed skipped her first three seasons of high school tennis to instead focus on tournament play.
By SAM MCDOWELL
The Kansas City Star
She changed her course this fall, though, electing to spend her senior season with Shawnee Mission East.
Her introduction to high school tennis has gone quite well.
Sneed won the Pembroke Hill Invitational on Saturday, defeating Notre Dame de Sion junior Michaela Henne in the championship match, 6-2, 6-3.
Her title helped lead Shawnee Mission East to a first-place team finish. Notre Dame de Sion placed second, followed by St. Joseph's Academy and Blue Valley North.
That was only the beginning of an accomplished week.
Sneed also captured first place in the St. Thomas Aquinas Invitational on Tuesday. She defeated teammate Elizabeth Barnickel in a pro-set title match, 8-4, to win the 16-team invitational.
Shawnee Mission East won the St. Thomas Aquinas Invtiational. Blue Valley Northwest placed third, Blue Valley took fourth and Blue Valley North tied Barstow for fifth place.
Cross country: Saints win
St. Thomas Aquinas took a bit of an unconventional route to the Kansas Class 5A girls cross country state championship last season — in the sense that the Saints won without placing a runner among the top-three finishers.
They're at it again.
St. Thomas Aquinas edged Lawrence Free State to win the eight-team Baldwin Invitational on Saturday. Free State runners Emily Venters and Clair Sanner took first and second, respectively, but St. Thomas Aquinas is using last season's formula to win meets. That formula is depth.
Senior Bailee Cofer placed third to lead St. Thomas Aquinas, finishing the 4-kilometer Baldwin City Golf Course in 14 minutes and 54.79 seconds. Not far behind, Emily Downey placed eighth, immediately followed by teammates Abbey Hopfinger, Grace Geiger, Monica Sneed and Grayson Smith.
Olathe East sophomore Kayla Davis placed fifth, helping her team to a third-place finish, with Blue Valley Northwest junior Hannah Holbert sixth and Olathe South junior Kaylee Shanley seventh.
Golf: Lancers are first
Shawnee Mission East continued its torrid start to the girls golf season by winning its home event, the Shawnee Mission East Invitational, on Monday.
The reigning Sunflower League champions finished with a team score of 346 at Meadowbrook Country Club, thanks to occupying four of the top seven spots. Jessica Young (third place), Teagan Noblit (fifth), Annie Foster (sixth) and Sophie Wetzler (seventh) combined for the team score.
Olathe Northwest's Audrey Judd won the tournament with a 2-under par round of 70. She is the defending Kansas Class 6A individual state champion.
Olathe South's Bailey Gibson took second with a 76.
Olathe East finished a distant second in the team standings, one stroke better than Olathe Northwest.
College: Hall of Fame inductee
Former Shawnee Mission Northwest High School athlete Jackie Kelble, now Jackie Sanders, was inducted into the Missouri University of Science and Technology athletic hall of fame on Saturday.
A 2001 graduate of Missouri S&T in Rolla, Mo., Sanders played for the women's basketball team and competed for the track team.
She was the school's first athlete to become an All-American in women's track. She set the school record in the javelin with a throw of 150 feet, four inches, which was good for sixth place in the 1999 NCAA Division II Championships.
For the basketball team, Sanders led the team with 15 points per game during her senior season.