DENVER — Greeley West's Nico Jamison burst his way onto the No. 1 singles scene during the first day of play at the Class 5A boys tennis state tournament.
Jamison, the lone freshman in the No. 1 singles draw, beat two juniors as he clinched a spot in Friday's semifinals. He opened his day with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Denver East's Louis Salfi, and then followed it with a 6-4, 7-5 win over Ralston Valley's Dayton Fisher in the quarterfinals.
In just his first state tennis meet, Jamison is seeking to join some rare company: Greeley West has had just one singles champion in school history, and it's someone Nico is familiar with — Nick Jamison, Nico's father, won in 1990.
Jamison will face Regis Jesuit's Morgan Schilling in the semifinals. Schilling, a junior, was runner-up at No. 1 singles last season, and won his first two matches 6-1, 6-1 (against Arapahoe's Jared Green) and 6-3, 6-2 (against Monarch's Michael Conde).
Schilling and Jamison have already met this season, having played in regionals. Schilling won that match 7-5, 6-2.
Also punching a semifinal ticket at No. 1 singles were:
- Cherry Creek junior George Cavo, who beat Rock Canyon's Chris Swanson (6-3, 6-1) and Mountain Vista's Trevor Fone (6-3, 6-1). Cavo was also a semifinalist last season, where he dropped a match to Schilling.
- Fairview junior Luke Silverman, who beat Poudre's Sam Knape (6-2, 6-0) and Heritage's Braeden Thomas (6-0, 4-2, withdraw). Silverman advanced to the quarterfinals in No. 1 singles last season.
Cavo and Silverman met way back on Aug. 28 in a match that went three sets. Cavo won, 6-4, 6-7 (5-7), 6-4.
In terms of the team race, defending champion Regis Jesuit leads the way with 21 points. Perennial power Cherry Creek is just behind with 19 points, Valor Christian is in third with 14, Denver East is fourth with 13, and Fairview is fifth with 10.
The tournament continues on Friday at Gates Tennis Center with semifinals at 9 a.m. in all positions. Playback matches will follow immediately.