BEAVERTON — Redmond High added its first tennis state championships to the school’s trophy case Saturday.
After senior Benny Saito and sophomore Skyler Jones captured the Class 5A boys doubles title, the Panthers also celebrated the team championship.
“This season has been a huge blessing,” Saito said. “I’m so grateful for everything that’s happened.”
Playing in the final match at Tualatin Hills Tennis Center, Saito and Jones lost the first set 6-2 to the Corvallis team of Eddie Hu and Lukas Reinkenobbe. But the Redmond duo stormed back to win the second set 6-2 and the third 6-3.
“It was like a dream,” Saito said. “We looked at each other and decided we’d fight for every point. It was an amazing experience.”
Redmond’s Breaden Brooks reached the semifinals of the singles bracket before falling to the eventual state champion — Churchill’s Alle Banna, 6-2, 6-1.
“I didn’t think Breaden played his best against him,” Redmond coach Nathan Saito said. “It could have been closer if he played loose. But Alle earned it. He’s a good champ.”
Fighting through a hip injury suffered in the semifinal loss, Brooks came back to defeat Hood River Valley’s Vaughn Reardon 6-1, 6-2 in the third-place match.
“I’m really proud of Breaden,” Nathan Saito said. “He played outstanding in the third-place match.”
Redmond’s Jeff Hair and Chad Pilling won the doubles consolation bracket.
“They played great tennis and had a big part in the team total,” Nathan Saito said. “It was a special weekend and a special season.”