05/17/10 — Local Preps Tennis

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Local Preps Tennis

By From staff reports
Published in Sports on May 17, 2010 1:46 PM

BURLINGTON -- Chaz Fitzpatrick chased history.

And he came close to adding his name to Wayne County tennis lore on a sweltering Saturday morning at the Burlington Tennis Center.

Fitzpatrick, the eastern regional singles champion, had his quest for a state title derailed in semifinal-round play of the 2010 N.C. High School Athletic Association 3-A men's tennis tournament. The Eastern Wayne freshman fell to eventual state champion Kyle Johnson of Charlotte Catholic 6-1, 7-5.

Johnson's straight-set victory prevented Fitzpatrick from becoming the Warriors' -- and county's -- first state champion since Charlie Drew in 2003. Johnson claimed his second straight singles crown.

Fitzpatrick (23-4 overall) received the No. 1 seed and opened tournament play with a 6-2, 6-1 decision over Forrest Cannon of Jay M. Robinson. He eliminated Hibriten's Huntley Nero 7-5, 2-6, 6-4 in quarterfinal-round action.

Teammate Russell Turner dropped a first-round match to Weddington's Dallas Croom. Turner, the regional runner-up to Fitzpatrick one week ago, was making his second trip to the state tournament.

"A great showing for Eastern Wayne," said second-year Warriors head coach Craig Hassell.

Four-time state qualifier Blake Vail, a senior from Charles B. Aycock, fell to Parks Thompson of Statesville.

In doubles, the Golden Falcons' tandem of Addison Westbrook-Dylan Quinn exited after a first-round loss Catholic's Sean Huber-Jordan Klochany.

Gray-Easom take 2nd

WILSON -- Wayne Christian's tandem of Taylor Gray-Christopher Easom finished state runner-up in the season-ending, N.C. Independent Schools Atheltic Association 1-A men's tennis tournament on Saturday.

Gray-Easom knocked off top-seeded Hayes Cummings-John Holt of The Elon School in semifinal-round play. They followed that with an 8-2 loss to Statesville Christian's Blake Dunlop-Garrison Dale.

The Eagles' Kenneth Giordano and Matthew Thompson advanced to the semifinals in fifth and sixth flight singles play, respectively. Giordano-Thompson also advanced to the semifinals in No. 3 doubles flight play after knocking out Wayne Country Day's duo of Ravi Chitilla-Alex Nolan.

Wayne Christian finished in a three-way tie for third place with Greenfield and Trinity of Durham in team competition. The Elon School successfully defended its team state championship, while Statesville Christian ended up second.