Four times in the last seven years, the Kilgore High School tennis program has sent a boys doubles team to the University Interscholastic League’s state tournament, played at Texas A&M University in College Station.
They haven’t brought back gold just yet, but Jack Tyra and Kalen Ray have the state experience under their belt, now, and will aim to come back as seniors next spring.
Tyra and Ray, led by coach Jason Maroney, played in the UIL’s 4A tennis spotlight on Thursday morning, but fell short, 6-2, 6-2, to Asher Melton and Bryce Ware of Canyon, who also won their semifinal match and were to play for the championship on Friday.
“(Ray and Tyra) played well at times,” said Maroney, who has been the coach for all four state boys doubles appearances. “But they were too inconsistent, and we didn’t play with confidence the entire match. We have a lot of areas to improve, so we’ll see if we can improve and give ourselves a better shot next year.”
Kilgore’s Trystan Dobbs and Kelton Kenney were state alternates.