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Tennis: The City Championships tournament gets underway Thursday evening

The City Championships tennis tournament gets underway Thursday evening at Bossier Tennis Center with four first-round matches.

Fourth-seeded John Gray Pou of Shreveport plays Shreveport’s Kevin Chang, No. 7 Stafford Yerger of Shreveport takes on Bossier City’s Michael Lauseng, No. 8 Jeffrey Goodman of Shreveport faces Benton’s Collin Sanford and Shreveport’s Jimmy Beebe meets Bossier City’s John Jeffries. All matches start at 6.

The City Championships is a revival of the old City Tennis Tournament. Started in 1923, it’s been about 10 years since it was last held at Querbes Park.

Organizers expected to add more divisions in the future, but this year’s event is starting with just men’s open singles and doubles. Prize money will be awarded in both divisions. The winners will receive $1,000 (per team in doubles), runners-up $400 and third place $100.

The tournament is open to players from across North Louisiana. The singles draw has 29 players and the doubles 11 teams.

Monroe’s Joel McGregor, the No. 1 seed, received a first-round bye. He is the tennis director at the Monroe Athletic Club.

Shreveport’s James McMaster is the No. 2 seed, and Bossier Tennis Center pro Todd Killen is No. 3. Both received first-round byes. Killen is a former City singles champion. Monroe’s Kirk Fisher is seeded sixth.

Other players from Bossier Parish in men’s singles are Benton’s Dirk Rainwater, Bossier City’s Kevin Quinlan, Haughton’s Zach Haley, Bossier City’s CJ Thames, Bossier City’s Cameron Lenard and Bossier City’s Josh Alexander.

Rainwater is a former champion.

The tournament runs through Sunday. Singles quarterfinals are scheduled for noon Saturday. Semifinals are scheduled for 10 a.m. Sunday with the championship match starting at 2:30 p.m.

The doubles finals is set for 12:30 p.m. Sunday. Fisher and McGregor are the top seed. Killen and Pou are seeded second.

— Russell Hedges, rhedges@bossierpress.com

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