Lily Ohlman rises up to lift girls varsity tennis to a 1-2-1 record in a three-day stretch


Ahead of the conference tournament, the girls varsity tennis team played three matches in a span of three days. FHC fought hard to tie Byron Center 4-4 on Monday, followed by a split in the FHN Double Dual. In this match, the Rangers handled Petosky but fell short to the Huskies. 24 hours later, the girls faced an incredibly talented West Ottawa team to cap off this grueling stretch and could not pull out a win. Despite some challenges, freshman Lily Ohlman continued to show why she is the future of this Ranger program. Winning three out of four matches, Lily’s contributions as of late has provided a huge lift for FHC. 

In a rescheduled match from a rain-out the previous week, the Rangers met Byron Center in a high-stakes matchup. FHC’s singles players came up huge, with wins from three girls. Lily Ohlman made quick work of her opponent, likewise to senior Emily Johnson’s success with 6-1 and 6-2 victories. At fourth singles, sophomore Veronica Vincent came up with a massive win to round out the singles category. The Rangers only saw one win from the doubles; however, this match proved to be significant. Senior Lily Campbell and junior Leila Gonzalez stole a win in their match, effectively evening the overall score and ending the match in a 4-4 tie.

In FHC’s double dual at Forest Hills Northern, the day started off perfectly. Against Petoskey, the girls came out on top in all but one match. Wins came in at first, third, and fourth singles that included a clean sweep in the doubles category. Two senior-sophomore tandems stole the show in this one, with Delaney Michalski and Brooke Kushak teaming up for a victory along with a win from Olivia Hooper and Megan Fox. This match was huge for the Rangers’ confidence and morale.

Against Northern, however, FHC did not fare such success. Lily Ohlman shined once again, breezing through her opponent at first singles. Other than this, the Rangers could not seem to get anything going. Following the team’s route of Petoskey, a disappointing defeat to its bitter rival was not what FHC had in store.

The finale of this three-game stretch involved a matchup with West Ottawa. The Panthers came into the match sporting one of the best records in the state and a considerably high ranking in Division One. West Ottawa’s performance was as advertised, as the Panthers were rolling against FHC. Although freshman Lucy Wu and sophomore Ella Hunnewell came exceptionally close, the Rangers could not come away with a single win. 

Standing as a minor setback, FHC has the opportunity to bounce back to a large extent on Thursday’s conference tournament. The girls have fought hard for this moment all season, and head coach Dan Bolhouse hopes to see some continuities in their competitive play.

“I’m hoping to see the improvement from our girls continue into the postseason. We have been improving at a fast rate with each match and practice, so I’m expecting that to continue,” coach Bolhouse said. “I’m also expecting our team to win the close matches.  Learning to win tight matches takes time and experience. I’ve watched our girls do this the past couple of weeks and it’s been fun seeing them win.” 

The moment that the girls have been waiting for all season has arrived: the conference tournament. With aspirations to play at regionals, the Lady Rangers have the opportunity to prove themselves in the all-day tournament on Thursday, May 13th starting at 8:30 AM.