ELKIN — Ashe County had one singles player and one doubles team reach the semifinals of the Mountain Valley Athletic Conference Qualifier, but fell short of qualifying for regional play.
“I am proud of the progress and development that the team made this year. It was a challenging year due to weather preventing a lot of court time early in the season, players getting used to playing in seeded position, younger inexperienced players and lack of consistency in our doubles lineup,” said Ashe County head coach Larry Dix. “The guys worked hard but could never find the consistency that is needed to move up in conference standings.”
Senior Andrew Shepherd scored a 6-1, 6-3 victory over Noah McRae from North Wilkes in the quarterfinal round. In the semis, Shepherd won the first set against Wilkes Central’s Daniel Vimont, 6-4, but then Vimont rallied back to win the second set 6-2 and then won the match with a 6-2 win in the third and final set.
Simon Houck and Devin Rupard scored a first round win over Josh Norman and Will Norman of North Wilkes, 6-0, 6-0. In the semifinals, Mac Garrett and John Frazier from Wilkes Central ended Houck and Rupard’s tournament run with a 6-4, 6-4 victory to reach the finals.
Wilkes Central’s team of Hunter Jordan and Dakota Massucco, one of the top ranked 2A doubles teams in the state, defeated teammates Garrett and Frazier, 6-0, 7-6 to win the 2A Doubles Championship.
In the 2A singles final, West Wilkes’ Landon Church defeated Vimont in straight sets, 6-1, 6-2.
Ashe’s Jacob Key was defeated in the quarterfinal round. Central’s Nick Johnson beat Key, 6-4, 6-3.
Noah Gouge and Dakin Christoferson were also defeated in the quarterfinal round, falling to Massucco and Jordan, 0-6, 2-6.
On the 1A side, Elkin’s Ryan Macy finished off an outstanding MVAC season, not losing a single game the entire year. Macy swept all three of his opponents, 6-0, 6-0, including Kyle Rhodes from East Wilkes in the championship match.
East Wilkes took home the doubles championship with the team of Landon Osborne and Joah Logan beating Elkin’s Jarrett Peterson and Daniel Soos, 7-5, 6-2.
While the season came to an end for the Huskies, the team has nothing to hang their heads about.
“I think that we were much better than our record indicated and several had the ability to play at the regional level,” said Coach Dix. “I commend them for their effort and for not giving up. They are good athletes and I enjoyed coaching them.”
Nathan Ham can be reached at 336-489-3062 or followed on Twitter @NathanHam87