03/30/11 — Cougars start conference play with tight victory

View Archive

Cougars start conference play with tight victory

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on March 30, 2011 1:47 PM

SEVEN SPRINGS -- Patience paid off.

Goldsboro traded ground stroke after ground stroke with county rival Spring Creek on Tuesday afternoon, and captured a 5-4 victory in the Carolina 1-A Conference boys' tennis opener for both teams.

"I was pleased," said second-year Cougars head coach Ryan Spell. "It was good to see the boys battle finally ... actually play some long rallies, not force the ball too much and wait for the opportune time to hit a winner.

"There were some mistakes and that's expected. We'll work on (cutting down) unforced errors as the season goes along."

The Cougars (1-2 overall, 1-0 CC) seized four singles points.

Second-seeded Bernard Green turned back the Gators' Adam Haggerty, 8-6, at No. 2 singles. Sixth-seeded Tyler Lane stopped Thomas Edwards, 8-5, while teammate Nathan Wright outlasted JD Quick, 9-7, at the No. 4 slot.

Sophomore Charles Robinson boosted Goldsboro's match advantage to 4-2 with a come-from-behind, 9-8 win over Cody Boozer at No. 3 singles. Robinson claimed the tiebreaker in dominating fashion, 7-1.

"Charles, I think, was actually down 4-2 and a break (in serve)," said Spell. "Mentally, he wasn't in it from the very beginning. But he's a competitor. Even if he gets down, he doesn't lose focus and he tries to overcome adversity in a match."

Returning starter Daniel Krentz and fifth-seeded James Bishop picked up singles points for Spring Creek, which was playing its season-opening match. The tandems of Bishop-Thomas Edwards and Haggerty-Boozer each earned a doubles point.

Goldsboro sealed the outcome when the No. 1 doubles of Ingram-Wright upended Krentz-Quick, 8-6.

"We were really close to having an opportunity to win," said first-year Gators head coach Ryan Fields. "I felt like we showed as a team that we're progressing, especially since we haven't had a lot of matches. Last week, I talked to them about not doing anything impressive on the court, but keeping the ball in play and being patient.

"Everybody played with their opponent and I'm real pleased with that."