Caesar Rodney isn’t ranked No. 2 in the state for nothing, and the Indian River varsity boys’ tennis team found out just how good they really are in play April 13.
First-ranked singles player senior Bobby Boyce fell hard to senior David Bringle, 0-6, 0-6. Boyce, who had worked his way to the No. 1 position on the team, was benched for the April 13 match against Dover, for missing practice. Rather than bump everyone up a spot, exhibition player Ed Smith stepped in to play Dover’s No. 1 ace, in a match he lost 1-6, 0-6.
Second-ranked singles player junior Fletcher Garrison lost his first match of the season to senior Matt Farrell, 2-6, 3-6. Garrison bounced back, defeating Dover’s second-ranked player 6-3, 6-1. Garrison leads the team in singles wins, improving to 5-1.
Third-ranked singles player senior T.J. Boyce (who last week defeated junior Sean McMullen for the position in inter-squad competition) lost his first two matches: one to freshman Kevin Papen, 0-6, 0-6, and then to Dover’s No. 3 player, 4-6, 3-6, after moving from doubles.
First-ranked doubles team McMullen and junior Daniel Rose gave senior Kyle Dunkel and junior Zhenia Bobak a run for their money before they submitted, 3-6, 5-7.
“Our doubles play was toe-to-toe the whole match, and if a couple shots could’ve gone our way
we might’ve taken the match,” Head Coach Sean Oates said.
McMullen had a new partner for the Dover match in junior Tony Reichart but was met by the same result: another loss, 3-6, 4-6.
Second-ranked doubles team Zack Mitchell and Chad Brasure (juniors) also dug deep against senior David Lewis and junior Mit Potel. They were the only Indian River representatives to force a third set against the perennial powerhouse.
“Zack and Chad’s match was exciting. They lost the first set 1-6, bounced back to win the second
set 6-2, and were down 5-2 in the third set. But they had a nice comeback to tie it at 5-5. They lost the last match 5-7, but they played hard,” said Oates.
The loss was the duo’s first of the season, dropping their record to 3-1. But they won the subsequent match against Dover, 6-4, 6-4, in yet another comeback victory, moving to 4-1.