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Boys tennis: Wiregrass Ranch extends perfect season

Published:   |   Updated: April 10, 2013 at 01:15 AM

WESLEY CHAPEL Wiregrass Ranch High coach Dave Wilson doesn't have many concerns when it comes to his talented boys tennis team.

"Usually it's just where we're going to eat after (a match)," the Bulls coach and athletic director said with a laugh.

The Bulls (17-0) defeated Plant 4-1 on Tuesday in the Class 4A-Region 3 semifinals.

The Bulls' lone loss to the Panthers (8-5) was the team's first dropped set and point against them this season. The Bulls had won every match this season 7-0 and in straight sets. Plant got its point when No. 3 seed Thomas Harmon defeated Niels van Dam 7-5, 6-0.

Wilson's new concern Tuesday was when No. 1 seed and FAMU commit Courage Okungbowa dropped the first game against Alec Josepher, but then would go on to win 6-1, 6-2.

"When I'm concerned about Courage, then I'm concerned the other games could be losses," Wilson said.

At the No. 2 seed, Agie Moreno defeated Robert Welch 6-2, 6-0, while Alejandro Feliciano and Foresight Okungbowa beat Max Kramer and Connor Jones, respectively, 6-0, 6-0.

Mike Camunas

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4A-3: Wharton triumphs

TAMPA Each of the first four points decided went in favor of Wharton as the Wildcats eased to a 4-1 win against Plant City in a Class 4A-Region 3 semifinal at Hunter's Green.

Cesar Maeda (6-0, 6-0), Jack Lange (6-2, 6-1), Tommy Hwang (6-0, 6-2) and Alek Crnogorac (6-4, 6-0) all won their singles matches, securing Wharton a spot in Thursday's region final at Wiregrass Ranch.

Plant City's Harrison Heysek led Sam Chaffin 5-0 in the third set when Crnogorac won Wharton's crucial fourth point on an adjacent court, leading to Chaffin's retirement from the match.

Michael Manganello

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3A-5: King cruises

TAMPA Last year, sixth in the state was good enough for King boys tennis coach Pete Adler and his team.

This year, sixth might not be enough. After sweeping Winter Haven, 7-0, in the Class 3A-Region 5 semifinals, Adler said his team doesn't plan to settle for anything less than a top-three finish at states.

With three of the top five players seniors, who have been with King for all four years, Adler said his team has the confidence and the talent to go deep at states.

"This is a very special team," Adler said. "The seniors bought into the program and came together with the team concept. These guys can be monsters."

Seniors Karil Kirkov, Victor Ke and Hengyi Wu all cruised in the singles, while Vignesh Bhethanabotla and Greg Smith also won for the Lions. Kirkov and Ke, and Smith and Bhethanabotla teamed to win doubles. King didn't lose a set the entire match.

Jeff Berlinicke

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3A-5: Chamberlain falls

LAKELAND Chamberlain's season ended with a rough 4-1 road loss at Lakeland Jenkins in the Class 3A-Region 5 semifinals.

The Chiefs' lone winner was No. 2 player Hunter O'Brien, who won 6-0, 6-3. O'Brien and Chamberlain's No. 1 player, Harrison Fisher, still will move onto next week's state tournament after winning the No. 1 doubles slot at districts.

"We played a tough schedule because we wanted to get prepared for the (postseason)," Chamberlain coach Lea Orchard said. "I'd have to say that overall we had a really good season."

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2A-3: Pasco stays alive

WESLEY CHAPEL Less than a week removed from its second consecutive district title, Pasco extended its season by sweeping all seven matches, without dropping a set, in a dominant showing against Belleview (7-4) in the 2A-3 regional semifinals.

"We have four players back from last year's district title team and the experience we gained last year has helped us all season," Pasco coach Mickey Wilks said. "This team has a lot of experience and a lot of confidence. They know what it takes to win."

The duos of Austin Riddaugh-Josh Morris and Alex Mitchell-Christian Yann won their pro set doubles matches after the Pirates won all five singles matches, allowing Pasco (16-2) to advance to the regional finals for the second year in a row.

Pasco will face Eastside on Thursday to determine the Class 2A-Region 3 champion in a rematch of last year's regional finals. The Rams advanced by blanking Brooksville Nature Coast, 7-0, in other regional semifinals action on Tuesday.

"We know it will take a herculean effort to beat them (Eastside). They are a very good team and we will need to play our best tennis of the season," Wilks said.

Kenny Sanders

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3A-3: Mitchell ousted

Mitchell made the trek to Gainesville and struggled against one of the top teams in the state in a 4-0 loss in the Class 3A-Region 3 semifinals.

"They were definitely an extremely strong team," Mitchell coach Peggy Hinmon said. "(Gainesville's) placement of serves were just immaculate. I'm extremely proud of my team for making it this far."

The top-three singles matches all ended 6-0, 6-0, while Gainesville's Jacob Gordon won at No. 4, 6-1, 6-2.

Andy Villamarzo

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2A-5: Jesuit cruises

TAMPA Jesuit senior Jordan Nasser set the tone early as the Tigers defeated Lake Wales 5-0 in a Class 2A-Region 5 semifinal at Hillsborough County Community College.

Nasser defeated Daniel Parlier 6-0, 6-0, while David Pagliarulo and Palmer Evans finished off their opponents in similar fashion with 6-0, 6-0 victories.

Max Azzarelli defeated Adrian Rodriguez 6-2, 6-0 in the fourth singles and the doubles team of Pagliarulo and Nasser capped off the afternoon with a 6-0, 6-1 win.

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2A-5: Robinson moves on

AUBURNDALE Robinson had an outstanding performance in its Class 2A-Region 5 semifinal in a 5-0 victory at Auburndale.

A couple of the highlights included victories at No. 4 and No. 5 singles with Jae Cho Chandler Luger gaining comeback victories at 5-7, 6-0, 6-3 and 7-6 (7-3), 6-4, respectively.

The team victory sets up a district final rematch with Jesuit on Thursday. The Tigers swept all the matches in the district final, but Robinson coach Lisa Derathe remains optimistic.

"We start all freshmen and sophomores so yes we're getting better all the time and we're really encouraged," Derathe said. "It's a great time right now at Robinson."

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1A-4: Tampa Prep rolls

TAMPA Tampa Prep dropped just one match en route to a 5-1 victory against Lakeland Christian in a Class 1A-Region 4 semifinal at Hillsborough Community College .

Alan Williams gave up two games to Evan Gonzalez on his way to a 6-2, 6-0 victory.

Valentine Mortier, Danny Palmer and Ben Leads each won their singles matches 6-0, 6-0.

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1A-4: Berkeley blanked

WINTER HAVEN Berkeley Prep's season ended with a 7-0 loss in the Class 1A-Region 4 semifinals to Winter Haven All Saints'.

"The top three for Winter Haven All Saints' are really tough and we could have won the No. 4 and No. 5 positions but it didn't happen," Berkeley Prep coach Jacquelyn Rosen said. "Overall we had a good season and there certainly is no shame in losing to (Winter Haven All Saints') because they are very, very strong."

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