Archive for Thursday, April 4, 2002

doubles team unbeaten against Baldwin, Highland Park, Olathe South

April 4, 2002


Free State High's boy's tennis team expected to start its season last week against Shawnee Mission South, but the dual was postponed because of bad weather.

Firebirds coach Jon Renberger then expected the team to begin with a quad Wednesday at Blue Valley, but things changed again.

"Blue Valley was supposed to host it, but they dropped it without telling anyone," he said. "Within the last week, we ended up hosting it. As far as we're concerned, all is well."

Nearly all was well Wednesday as the Firebirds finally began their season and went 9-3 in a quad with Baldwin, Highland Park and Olathe South.

Both of Free State's doubles teams went 3-0 and neither lost more than four games in any set.

Ben Cropp and Matt Schwabauer teamed up at No. 1 doubles, and Eyad Safadi and Eric Sheu played in the No. 2 slot.

"It's a very good beginning," Sheu said. "I was pretty confident today, pumped up and ready to go. I was pretty disappointed about last week, but I think this week made up for that."

Alan Martinez won two of his three matches, dropping just an 8-6 decision to Olathe South's Adam Hougland, and Rishi Surana went 1-2 at No. 2 singles for Free State.

"The doubles looked really good, and Martinez played well at No. 1 singles, and we have some depth after this so it's too early to tell," Renberger said of his lineup. "With two duals next week, everybody will have the chance to play. By the end of next week I think some things will take care of themselves."

Baldwin, a Class 4A school, went 3-9 against the larger schools.

"I think it's a little frustrating for the kids because you don't get to build your confidence early," BHS coach Troy Webb said. "They're ready to play 4A schools, so I don't think they see how good it is for them to get competition like this. It's nice to get a couple of wins here."

Baldwin's Cory Venable picked up an 8-5 victory over Surana in No. 2 singles. Both doubles teams defeated their Highland Park counterparts. The No. 1 doubles team of Eric Jorgensen and Brent Schultz won 8-5, and No. 2 doubles team of Jeff Hill and Dennis Craig won 8-3.

"I kind of figured we'd do better against Highland Park because we had competed better in the past against them," Webb said. "We knew we had them first and we were excited about that, but it just didn't work out. We kind of played a little nervous, but overall so far we're pretty happy."

Free State's dual against SM South has been rescheduled to next Wednesday at SMS. That is the team's third meet of the week, along with a dual at LHS on Monday and a quad on Tuesday.

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