Ashe County split a pair of tennis matches late last week. The Huskies easily handled non-conference foe Oak Hill Academy, 6-0, but came up on the losing end at Elkin, 9-0.
Oak Hill brought only four players so the teams played four singles matches and two doubles matches.
“Although we only played six matches, it provided more match experience for those that played. The more they play, the most consistent they become,” said Ashe County Head Coach Larry Dix.
Top seeded Alex Church kept Devin Soulsby from winning a single game on the way to a 6-0, 6-0 win.
Second seeded Jacob O’Neal earned a 6-0, 6-1 win against Jun Jung.
In the third seeded match, it came down to a third set tiebreaker after Andrew Shepherd won the first set, 6-1, but fell in the second set, 4-6, to Josh Yoon. Shepherd bounced back to win the tiebreaker in a big way, 11-0.
Fourth seeded Caleb Adcock had no trouble with James Yuan, winning 6-0, 6-0.
Church and O’Neal won their doubles match by an 8-0 score over Soulsby and Jung. Shepherd and Adcock took an 8-2 win against Yoon and Yuan.
“I continue to be proud of the way they go to the net and use court positions to their advantage,” said Coach Dix. “I am pleased with the way they are serving and going in for approach shots.”
On Thursday, Ashe traveled to Elkin to face the conference leader. The strong Elkin squad remained undefeated, easily defeating the Huskies.
“I was very proud of how our players kept their heads up and continued to play very hard against a very strong state contender team,” Dix said. “Playing teams like this can only help develop the players.”
Ryan Schell beat Church in straight sets, 6-0, 6-0. David Bullin was also a 6-0, 6-0 winner over O’Neal. Chad Vestal and Jacob Lyon earned 6-0, 6-1 wins over Shepherd and Adcock. Matthew Schumak beat Frank Ledezma, 6-0, 6-1 and Jarrett Peterson beat Dakin Christoferson, 6-0, 6-0.
The doubles matches were closer, but Elkin still won all three.
Ashe is now 5-6 overall and 3-5 in conference play. The Huskies will be at Starmount on Tuesday and will play Wilkes Central at home on Thursday.
*Nathan Ham can be reached at (336) 846-7164 or on Twitter @NathanHam87