There were upsets and there were the predictable matches Thursday as the gold tier of Intermountain Junior Tennis Championships started to take the final few bows.
In the one final played on Thursday, Mike Hemsi of Colorado, one of the country's top junior players, won the girls' 16 singles over No. 2 seed Cris Shin of Idaho, 7-5, 6-2.Other finals in boys' and girls' age classes were played earlier today at the Canyon Racquet Club.
Under an experimental format, intermountain players were ranked in three groups this year - gold, silver and bronze - according to playing levels.
One of the big upsets was posted in the boys' 18 and involved a local player. No. 3-seeded Andy Zurcher of Colorado upset No. 1 seeded Chris Reilly of Salt Lake City in straight sets, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3.
In other matches involving Utah players, Alex Buxton of Salt Lake City, the No. 2 seed in the boys' 14, moved into the finals with a 6-2, 6-2, win over No. 3-seeded Grant Huddin of Colordo.
In the boys' 16, David Smith of Colorado beat Utah's Brian Conner, 4-6, 6-1, 6-2.
Casey Hibler of Salt Lake City, the No. 3 seed in the boys' 12, pulled another major upset by beating top seeded Seth Mikkelson of Idaho, 3-6, 7-6 (7-2), 6-3. He played another Salt Laker, Michael Rich, in the finals. Rich, the No. 2 seed, beat Corby Hales of Provo in the semis 6-4, 6-1.
In the girls' 14, top-seeded Angela Nelson of Salt Lake City, beat Adrien Alder of Ogden, 5-7, 7-6 (8-6), 6-1. In the other semi, Farley Taylor of Montana, the No. 3 seed, upset Juliet Alder of Odgen, 6-2, 6-4.
And in the girls' 12, Rochelle Auer of Montana, beat Kim Kelly of Salt Lake City, 6-3, 6-2, in the semis, and top-seeded Brenda Vlasak of Colorado, beat No. 3 Megan Payne of St. George, 6-2, 6-4.
This tournament is important to intermountain players because in weighs heavily in annual rankings and in determining those players that will go on to play in national events.