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Boys tennis: Doubles depth, dedication put Wilsonville in perfect position

Wildcats two wins away from undefeated record in league play


by: JEFF GOODMAN / FILE - Quinn Everts and the Wilsonville boys tennis team won their first 10 matches in Northwest Oregon Conference play. The Wildcats are two victories away from a perfect league record.It’s becoming clear that the Wilsonville boys tennis team has more talent and depth than its Northwest Oregon Conference counterparts.

But coach Matt Snyder said his players haven’t relied on those advantages to win matches.

The Wildcats (12-1, 10-0 in the NWOC), who are two league matches away from a perfect regular season, have complemented their on-court strengths with dedication and mental fortitude.

“This team is special, and I am pleased and impressed with the amount of focus these kids have and the willingness to put in the work,” Snyder said. “Sometimes, when a team has more skill and athleticism than the teams it competes against, a general sense of entitlement and distraction — along with a sense of not needing to put in the work — can become the mindset. But I have yet to see that in this team, and I don’t see it coming anytime soon after watching this last week of practice and competition.”

Wilsonville 8, MILWAUKIE 1: The Wildcats split the two contested singles matches but rolled to an easy team victory on the road April 28 due to seven forfeits by the Mustangs.

Wilsonville senior Husam Zaidan took a break from doubles to face Milwaukie sophomore Jacob Cates on the top singles court. He fell to the reigning first-team all-league honoree, 6-4, 6-2.

“Husam had a fun time playing singles but was ready to return to doubles,” Snyder said.

Bricker Like played at No. 2 singles for the Wildcats, earning a 6-4, 6-2 victory.

“Bricker has really improved this season and has been coming on strong and making an excellent case for more playing time,” Snyder said.

Wilsonville 7, SANDY 2: A sweep of the four contested doubles matches on the road April 29 helped the Wildcats defeat the Pioneers for the second time this season.

Zaidan and Garrett Wright defeated Nash Idler and Jerytt Liaty 6-7, 7-6, 6-3 in comeback fashion on the top court despite Wright’s lightheadedness.

“Garrett has really tried to become a leader on the team, and he showed a lot of heart in not letting me take him out,” Snyder said.

Quinn Everts and Austin Miller won a challenge match to take the No. 2 position and lived up to the expectations with a 6-2, 6-2 victory. Kody Wilde and Sam Laurin cruised to a 6-3, 6-1 triumph on the third court while adjusting their focus from power to placement.

“They are extending points and getting to the net and dominating instead of hitting a lot of forced errors,” Snyder said.

Sam Gomez and Alex Molisani joined forces for a 6-4, 6-2 decision at No. 4 doubles.

Ben Scott earned Wilsonville’s only contested victory in singles play, winning 6-0, 6-0 at No. 3. Kyle Andrews and Mikael Karlsson fell on the first and second courts, respectively.

Wilsonville 8, SHERWOOD 1: Despite strong winds, the Wildcats earned a season sweep of their rivals in the team’s final meeting before the Bowmen jump to Class 6A.

Kyle Andrews, Ben Scott and Andrew Adams all won two-set matches in singles play as Mikael Karlsson faced fellow exchange student Anders Joergensen on the No. 1 court. Karlsson fell 6-0, 6-1.

“Even though Mikey lost, he still enjoyed it and was glad he got to play his friend from overseas,” Snyder said.

Wilsonville won all five doubles matches. Zaidan and Wright won 6-1, 7-6, squandering a 5-1 lead in the second set before regrouping down the stretch.

“It was a good experience for them to see that they need to keep the pedal to the metal and not let up,” Snyder said.

Everts and Miller won at No. 2 (6-3, 6-1), Wilde and Laurin delivered at No. 3 (6-2, 6-2), Gomez and Molisani cruised at No. 4 (6-2, 6-2) and Chase Eisenbrandt and Charlie Stapleton logged a 6-3, 6-1 victory on the fifth court. It was the last match of the season for Eisenbrandt, who is leaving for a mission trip.

***

AT A GLANCE

A look at the Wilsonville boys tennis team’s last three matches:

Monday, April 28: Wilsonville 8, MILWAUKIE 1

Tuesday, April 29: Wilsonville 7, SANDY 2

Friday, May 3: Wilsonville 8, SHERWOOD 1


By Jeff Goodman
Sports editor
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