Cheney boys sweep competition
Cheney's Mason Van Stone went 3-0 in No. 1 singles action, defeating opponents from Shadle Park, Medical Lake and Freeman.
The Cheney boys' tennis team played at full strength this past week as they went 3-0 in competition.
In their first dual of the season, March 19, the Blackhawks defeated Shadle Park 6-1.
Mason Van Stone stepped up to No. 1 singles to beat Shadle Park's Dillon Milliron, 6-2, 6-4.
In his debut at No. 4 singles, Shogo Starr beat the Highlander's Nate Boucher, 6-0, 6-4.
Ryan Axtell dropped down to No. 2 singles, where he defeated Shadle Park's Ian Stein, 6-3, 6-4.
Head coach Jesse Erickson said the players started strong in their first sets and were able to close out their matches, despite Shadle Park's attempts to make a comeback.
All three of Cheney's doubles teams were victorious in their matches. Adam Passey and Tristan Bennett (No. 1 doubles) broke their strings. Although they had trouble using their replacement rackets at first, the duo came back from a one-set deficit to beat Shadle Park's Robert Aini and Jamaal Burns, 2-6, 6-3, 6-0.
Erickson said the chemistry with the doubles teams has gotten a lot better.
"They're telling each other things like when the ball is coming at them and when to switch sides," Erickson said. "Shadle was a solid win for us."
The next day, Cheney traveled to Medical Lake to defeat the Cardinals 7-0.
While the Blackhawks came away with impressive wins in each of their matches, the pair of Britton Williams and Luge Huguenin (No. 2 doubles) put on "the performance of the day" as they shutout the Cardinals' Jordan Lohr and Josh Miller, 6-0, 6-0.
"As a coach you can't ask for anything more than 6-0 wins," Erickson said.
The Blackhawks carried their momentum into the next dual when they beat Freeman, 6-1.
Axtell, Van Stone and Starr finished their week with no losses. Jordan Kauwe (No. 3 singles) finished the week at 2-1 after he defeated Freeman's Will Lima 6-3, 2-6, 6-2.
The team of Dirk Ray and Brandon Foster (No. 3 doubles) also finished the week undefeated, after they beat Freeman's Jace Olson and Isaac Stokoe, 6-2, 6-4.
"A lot of games (against Freeman) were close," Erickson said. "Guys were taking the points when it got to deuces. When that (situation) happens, you need to capitalize on it."
Erickson said the team has been working on their return serves, groundstrokes and consistency. He added that their confidence continues to grow and hopes they can carry that for the rest of the season.
"I couldn't be more impressed with these guys," Erickson said. "We had a strong week and hopefully we can continue this. We're going to work hard and continue to improve in hopes of keeping this undefeated season alive."
The Blackhawks will travel to North Central to play the Indians, March 26, and then host West Valley the next day.
Al Stover can be reached at email@example.com.