Goldsboro nets first-ever victory over Rosewood in boys' tennis
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on April 12, 2013 1:47 PM
Goldsboro, this time, handled the adversity.
The Cougars compensated for an absence in their lineup and defeated Carolina 1-A Conference boys' tennis rival Rosewood, 5-4, at the John Allen Farfour courts at Herman Park on Thursday afternoon.
The victory snapped a seven-match skid against the Eagles.
And it could lead to a bigger prize.
Should Goldsboro "run the table" during the final week of regular-season play, it will earn at least a share of the program's first conference championship in two-plus decades.
"This win means a lot," first-year Cougars head coach Susan Randolph said. "This is our last year as a 1-A team and this is our last shot to try to take this conference (title). They have worked really hard to bring this team up to where they know it can go."
In their previous meeting, the Cougars had two players arrive late and they struggled to overcome some nerves against the perennially-strong Eagles, who won the match 6-3.
Goldsboro (4-1 overall, 3-1 CC) entered the rematch minus its top seed, Tyler Lane, who was on an academic trip. Randolph revamped the lineup and the Cougars played confident on each singles court. They forced the Eagles into uncharacteristic errors and capitalized on the big points.
"I was disappointed, but Goldsboro just played better," second-year RHS head coach Clifton Greenup said. "We definitely could have played better, but we had a lot of unforced errors. Goldsboro's kids are definitely a good team and should be commended for their performance.
"It was a big match ... good to finally see some county rivalries popping up, which really tickles me."
The Cougars took four singles courts, including three in tie-breaking fashion. Second-seeded Josh Matias battled through some second-set miscues and defeated Rosewood's Fouad Ismail 6-2, 7-6 (4). Teammate Charles Robinson rallied from a one-set deficit to upend Nathan Tubb 2-6, 6-3, 10-7. Fifth-seeded Devin Collins stopped the Eagles' Nolan Tubb 7-6 (3), 5-7, 11-9.
Goldsboro's Jon Stevens cruised past Hunter Hinson 6-2, 6-1 at the No. 4 singles spot.
Rosewood (8-1, 3-1) got singles victories from top-seeded Dylan Cuddington and sixth-seeded Tyler Power. The reigning eastern 1-A singles champion, Cuddington remained unbeaten in nine outings this season.
"They all played their heart out, both sides," Randolph said. "It was a tough match when we lost to them the first time ... really close in doubles. We vowed we weren't losing this one."
The Cougars' third-seeded tandem of Matias-Collins secured the outcome with an 8-4 decision over the Eagles' Hinson-Power.
"We went in there with confidence and I told my partner to keep his cool, stay confident because we had this," Matias said. "They tried to change their strategy, but we kept our cool, kept it consistent and we hit our shots."
Rosewood's Cuddington-Ismail won 8-2 at No. 1 doubles. The No. 2 tandem of Nathan Tubb-Nolan Tubb reeled off seven straight games to hand Robinson-Stevens a 9-7 loss.
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