2017-04-19 / Sports

Boys, girls tennis teams finish well in region

By David Stembridge


The 2017 3-AAAA Region Champions are, from left, Carl Hurst, Aaron Baulos, Brett Wigley, Nicky Nunez, Christopher Egan, Jalen Johnson, Bradley Moore, David Skinner, Devon Hill and coach Lee Smoak. The 2017 3-AAAA Region Champions are, from left, Carl Hurst, Aaron Baulos, Brett Wigley, Nicky Nunez, Christopher Egan, Jalen Johnson, Bradley Moore, David Skinner, Devon Hill and coach Lee Smoak. The Burke County Bears tennis teams competed in the 3-AAAA Region Championship games last week, and the boys claimed the Region Championship while the girls took second place.

Boys coach Lee Smoak was impressed with how the boys played after coming off spring break. He said they looked sharp and all had quick matches. In the final round against Thomson, Smoak said that all seven players played at the highest level they have played all year.

“Every player showed up focused and ready to win a title,” Smoak said. “As a coach, you can’t ask for more than this. I’m very proud of our boys. We set a goal of winning region early in the season and the boys never looked back.”


Members of the girls tennis team are, from left, front row: Sarah Boothe, Kenzie Tobat, Mackenzie Long and Savannah Zeccardi; and back row: Aubrey Mallard, Grace Coalson, Avary Evans, Lori Findley and coach Laurie Dickey. Not pictured is Karen Auvenshine. Members of the girls tennis team are, from left, front row: Sarah Boothe, Kenzie Tobat, Mackenzie Long and Savannah Zeccardi; and back row: Aubrey Mallard, Grace Coalson, Avary Evans, Lori Findley and coach Laurie Dickey. Not pictured is Karen Auvenshine. In the second round against Cross Creek last Tuesday, junior Chris Egan won 6-1, 6-0, and senior Jalen Johnson won 6-0, 6-1. Freshman Aaron Baulos won by forfeit and senior Brad Moore/junior Brett Wigley won 6-0, 6-0 and freshman David Skinner/junior Nicky Nunez won 6-0, 6-0.

On Tuesday, the girls tennis team beat Cross Creek High School 5-0 to secure a spot in the region championship match against ARC. On Thursday, they lost to ARC with a score of 2-3.

Girls coach Laurie Dickey said that everyone played very well and beat their opponents quickly, but on Thursday the team really tried to rally and it just didn’t work in their favor.

Senior Grace Coalson at #2 singles was very determined and focused in her match and played with a lot of poise and used several strategies to keep her opponent moving. The #1 doubles team of junior Karen Auvenshire and senior Mackenzie Long remained undefeated for the season by beating their opponent handily.

Sophomore Sarah Boothe and freshman Kenzie Tobat had some good shots and worked hard to help secure the title for the team.

“Our number one and num- ber three singles players lost, but they both did a great job of continuing to play competitively against strong hitters,” said Dickey. “The final match to determine the winner was left up to number two doubles, and our girls just couldn’t pull through in the end. They worked very hard to comeback in the first set after being down four games and take it to a tie breaker, but they weren’t able to win that set. They started out promising in the second set with a slight lead, but ARC closed the gap quickly to take that set as well.”

In the region championship against Thomson last Thursday, Moore/Wigley got the team going with a quick 6-0, 6-0 win. Baulos scored their second win of the afternoon winning 6-1, 6-0. The third and decisive victory was secured by Johnson who, after having dropped the first set 4-6, battled back to win the next two sets 6-1, 6-3.

Dickey said that this is Smoak’s first year coaching tennis and that he’s done a great job with the boys.

“He always pushes them at practice and obviously all of their hard work has paid off,” she said. “He was able to lead the softball team to a region championship and now the boys tennis team. I commend him on the positive way he’s impacting athletics at BCHS with hard work and dedication.”

Both the boys and girls played Cairo in the first round of the state playoffs yesterday (Tuesday, April 18) but results were not available by press time.

Return to top