Grantsville has been to the pinnacle of region and state in boys tennis play and Tooele is rising in an attempt to get there.
And when the two teams met Tuesday at THS, the Cowboys showed the up and coming Buffs that composure and staying calm can be a huge asset in competitive net play.
Grantsville captured a pair of singles and both doubles matches to produce a 4-1 varsity victory Tuesday at Tooele.
Jordan Nelson and Logan Paulich each captured singles wins while the Cowboy doubles squads of Brent Mouritsen-Josh Childs and Micah Watson-Jake Parkinson garnered triumphs as well.
Cody Castle produced the triumph of the day for the Buffs.
Tooele displayed some strong shots and impressive skills. But Grantsville overcame the adversity throughout the matches and battled back with strong will and poise to produce some hard fought victories. Grantsville first-year Coach David Millward said he was encouraged with his team’s best overall performance of the season.
“I think we played fairly well,” he stated. “I thought we played the best tennis we have yet this season. Jordan played extremely well. Jordan played the best he’s played all season. Our first singles was a great match. Cody Castle is a tough to beat but I felt like Chris Elsholz played well and gave him everything he could. Cody just returns everything and forces players to have to hit a winner to end the point.
“I thought our second doubles, after they lost the first set, really showed composure and came back to win the match,” he added. “I was really impressed with their poise and character to battle back and win the final two sets. Tooele is an up and coming team and (Coach) Derek (Smith) has really done a good job with their program. There is respect between the two programs and this was a big win for us to open league play.”
Meanwhile, Buff Coach Smith said his team just didn’t play up to their potential in the match. “It was obviously disappointing for us,” he noted. “We felt we would do much better than we did. Grantsville has always played good tennis and they held true again on Tuesday.
They have a great tradition that supports them and that in turn gives them the confidence to get the win. We need to become more mentally tough and not let distractions or unexpected events change our play.
“It was like an emotional roller- coaster for most of our boys and we know we can play better tennis than we showed on Tuesday,” he added. “We need to learn to play the matches in the present, not before hand or relive the past.
“We need to learn how to have fun on the court and not let the little things upset us during a match.”
Grants. 4 – Tooele 1
The Cowboys swept the doubles and earned a pair of singles wins to hold off the Buffs in the Region 11 opener Tuesday at Tooele.
Cowboy Jordan Nelson powered his way to a 6-1, 6-1 triumph over Buff netter Sean Neuman at second singles and teammate Paulich earned a 6-2, 6-1 decision over Tooele’s Brian Buzianis at third singles as well.
The Grantsville duo of Mouritsen and Childs dropped a couple of games early in their first doubles match but the Cowboy combo rallied back to win 6-4, 6-0 and upend Buff tandem Denis Tillman and Greg Auxier. The Cowboys second doubles team of Watson and Parkinson dropped their first set to the Buff team of Hayden Farley and Josh Snow, 6-2. But Watson and Parkinson battled back to capture a 6-0, 6-2 triumph in the second and third sets to capture second doubles for Grantsville as well.
The best match of the day was definitely first singles where Tooele’s Castle and Grantsville’s Chris Elsholz battled point-forpoint, game-for-game and setfor- set for the entire contest.
Elsholz fought to a first set victory 6-4 in the opening round.
However, Castle regrouped to record a pair of 6-4, 6-4 wins and seize the first singles match in tough, hard fought fashion.
In JV play, Cody Perkins and Jared Norgan earned wins for the Cowboys and the doubles team of Michael Garrard and Gary Jones claimed a victory for GHS as well.
Greg Auxier logged a singles win for the Buffs while the doubles squad of Kevin Schmidt and Matt Wihongi also captured a triumph for Tooele.