Sports

Trojan tennis breaks serve in new league

By March 18, 2011

OAK RIDGE senior Tanner Schmutte gets ready to swing during a set against a Ponderosa High School player at the March 14 match. Village Life photo by Pat Dollins

OAK RIDGE senior Tanner Schmutte gets ready to swing during a set against a Ponderosa High School player at the March 14 match. Village Life photo by Pat Dollins

The Oak Ridge and Ponderosa boys tennis teams embark on new challenges this spring playing in a new league and a higher division. One thing that won’t change: as members of the Delta River League, the Trojans and Bruins will still play each other twice during the regular season.

Their first match ended with a Trojan victory on March 14.

Despite its string of Sierra Valley Conference championships, Oak Ridge will be challenged this season by Jesuit — a strong contender in the Delta River League. Aside from that prediction, Trojans’ head coach Pat Ryan said he needs to see more of the other teams in the league before giving an honest assessment.

“In the past five years we have played preseason matches against Division I teams and were competitive with most of the teams we have played,” Ryan said. “As for moving to to Division I, we will have to let you know once we get further into the season but entering the league season almost at full strength we feel real good about our chances to complete for a Delta River League championship.”

Ryan describes this year’s Oak Ridge team as strong after returning seven of last season’s eight top players. At the top of the ladder Tanner Schmutte and Brandon Sutter are both considered No. 1 players with Andrew Hall anchoring the middle. Others singles players include Jimmy Giovannini, Alex Charn, Nic Atkinson and Jacob Zetlin.

Troy’s doubles teams have improved in strength as well. Zetlin, Atkinson, Jonathan Kim, Charlie Conaro, Tom Barton, Matt Fergerson, Scotty Lee and Matthew Lair will all contend for spots.

Oak Ridge 8, Ponderosa 1

Singles (OR first): Tanner Schmutte def. by Kevin Valentine 6-7 (6-8), 6-6, retired; Andrew Hall def. Christian Bower 6-2, 6-3; Jimmy Giovannini def. Jake Wiesner 6-0, 6-0; Alex Charn def. Forrest Bacchi 6-1, 6-1; Nick Atkinson def. Brendon Sauer 6-0, 6-1.

Doubles (OR first): Charlie Conaro-Tom Barton def. Andrew Olson-Skylar Levinson 6-1, 6-2; Jonathan Kim-Matt Fergerson def. Barrett Juhrend-Spencer Preciado 6-0, 6-3; Matthew Lai-Scotty Lee def. Max Donovan-Adam Smith 6-2, 6-1.

Jerry Heinzer

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