Region 4-AAAAA Tournament
Northgate headed back to state tennis tourney
by Staff Reports
Last season, Northgate's boys tennis team set a new milestone by clinching its first trip to the GHSATournament.
On Monday at home, the Vikings added yet another first by earning a return trip to the state playoffs.
Battling its way to a fourth-place finish, Northgate held on to the final playoff berth following this year's Region 4-AAAAA tournament, earning a chance at duplicating its 2012 first-round state victory when state tournament play opens next week.
Starr's Mill, which reached last year's AAAA semifinals, captured a region championship for the second consecutive season.
The Vikings' losses came to eventual second and third-place finishers Union Grove and McIntosh.
Northgate will also host today's Region 4-AAAAA girls tournament, with the Lady Vikings opening play against Ola.
Northgate's boys clinched a state berth with a 3-0 sweep over Mundy's Mill. It included singles victories from No. 1 player Hayden Victer (6-1, 6-0), No. 2 seed C.J. Evans (6-3, 6-4) and the team's No. 1 doubles pairing of Cole Chenowith and Derek Kinsch (6-1, 6-1).
Matches were halted following a deciding third victory to keep the tournament to one afternoon.
Both Evans and No. 3 singles player Larry Sloan were leading matches against Union Grove by the time the Wolverines clinched against the Vikings. Evans led 6-2, 6-7(6-8), 1-0 while Sloan was ahead 6-2, 2-1.
Victer lost his match 6-0, 6-3 and Chenowith and Kinsch fell 6-1, 6-1. Union Grove added a victory over Northgate's No. 2 doubles team of Austin Horvat and Bharath Shankar to send the Vikings into the consolation bracket.
In the third-place match against McIntosh, the Chiefs swept all five lines despite competitive matches in four of them. Victer dropped a 3-6, 5-7 decision and Evans fell 4-6, 3-6.
Horvat and Shankar were defeated 3-6, 4-6 in doubles while the Vikings' top tandem of Chenowith and Horvat lost 2-6, 3-6.
• PLAYERS EXCEL AT USTA EVENT IN PEACHTREE CITY
Top players from Coweta prepared for this week's region tournaments by competing in last weekend's USTA event at the Peachtree City Tennis Center.
Chenowith won the Boys 16 year-old championship with a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Charlie Wilson after advancing through the quarterfinals and semis with help from tiebreakers.
County standouts were also among the top-three girls finishers among 16-year-olds. Heritage School singles player Tate Crymes defeated Northgate's Lauren Handley 6-0, 6-1 while Lady Viking Danielle Rankin placed third.
Other local winners included Olivia Dumas' championship in the Girls 14 division. Dumas defeated Sydney Soto 6-0, 6-2.
Cameron Rogin placed third in the Girls 12 division by defeating Charly Stowe 6-2, 6-4.
Ally Chenowith won back-to-back singles matches and then teamed for a doubles win with Taylor Morris.
A Coweta-based lineup captained by Kevin Morris also won a team match in the tournament.