By Joshua Koch / Special Contributor
COLLEGE STATION — Dallas ISD schools aren’t known for a consistent presence at the UIL state tennis tournament. But for the past two years, a pair of friends have been proud to carry the torch for Hillcrest.
Anne Gilliam, a junior, and Zane Kohrs, a senior, each competed at the Class 5A state tournament a year ago in singles. Gilliam made history by winning a gold medal.
Yet the duo decided to not compete individually this season and team up instead. Gilliam chose to forego a shot at defending her title to join Kohrs in mixed doubles.
After reaching the finals, Gilliam and Kohrs lost to Highland Park’s Phillip Quinn and Madison McBride in three sets (3-6, 6-0, 6-2) on Friday at the Mitchell Tennis Center.
“They played really hard. They had a great season,” first-year Hillcrest tennis coach Kevin Burgess said. “The camaraderie between the two of them has been great. I’ve just really enjoyed coaching them. Fell a little short today, but that happens sometimes.”
Kohrs’ career comes to a close at Hillcrest with back-to-back trips to the state tennis tournament and a silver medal. He has signed to play next season at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley next year.
For Gilliam, a two-time state medalist, she has been battling a shoulder issue but could still make another run to the state tournament next year.
Looking back on the last two years, Gilliam said it has been special to be a part of the history she and Kohrs have created at Hillcrest.
“It means a lot for us to be a part of that,” she said. “I never would have thought that this would happen to us but I’m really glad it did. I hope someone like us comes to Hillcrest.”