Boys tennis: Break point — Royals take down Raptors on roadThe Royals’ unblemished conference record remained intact last week after a road win over the rival Raptors.
By: Patrick Johnson, Staff Writer, Woodbury Bulletin
The Royals’ unblemished conference record remained intact last week after a road win over the rival Raptors.
Woodbury defeated East Ridge 5-2 April 28, boosting its overall record to 4-1 (3-0 conference). East Ridge dropped to 1-3 in Suburban East play and 1-4 overall.
For East Ridge, the loss ended a grueling string of seven matches in nine days.
Woodbury now begins its own run through the gauntlet, set to play six games in nine days – including matches this week against two of the top teams in the state: Mounds View and Forest Lake.
Woodbury coach Derek Otto called the upcoming matches “huge,” adding that his players are especially excited to avenge last year’s match against Forest Lake.
“That’ll be a very well contested match,” he said.
In the rivalry match-up, Woodbury bested East Ridge in every singles pairing, except No. 4, where eighth-grader Vishael Gupta grabbed a victory over Woodbury’s Josh Rehholz.
At No. 1 singles, Dennis Zhou took down Mitch Taylor 6-2, 6-3 in a battle of seniors. Despite the score, Otto called the match-up “well contested,” noting that it was the last game to be finished.
Meanwhile, Woodbury senior Jake Sajevic defeated East Ridge junior Colton Mog 6-0, 6-0 at No. 2 singles, while Ben Wortmann beat freshman Raptor Zekeria Nigatu.
Woodbury faltered for the first time at No. 1 doubles, ending an unbeaten streak dating back to 2010, Otto said. The duo of Wilmar Tropezo and Greg Slarrow took down Alex Haugstad and Matt Shubert 6-3, 1-6, 6-2.
“We just didn’t have it,” Otto said of the doubles match. “I expect them to get it back.”
Woodbury’s Joey Shubert and Ben Wortman beat Raptors Branden Hickey and Joaquin Valdes 6-1, 6-4 at No. 2 doubles. Zack Moore and Jan Groth also earned a Woodbury victory at No. 3 doubles.