Marmion wins sixth straight SCC title
The odds were stacked overwhelmingly against the nearest Marmion pursuers Saturday morning and afternoon in Wheaton.
The Cadets, unblemished in regular-season Suburban Christian Conference boys tennis dual meets, were seeking a sixth consecutive league championship.
Marmion was almost as flawless at St. Francis during the conference tournament, scoring 13 out of a possible 15 points by capturing all three doubles championships and second singles en route to 20 total points.
Wheaton Academy and St. Francis theoretically tied for second, but the host Spartans can break the deadlock for runner-up Tuesday with a makeup win over Walther Lutheran.
Marian Central Catholic, which crowned the only non-Marmion champion in the person of Aaron Waters at first singles, was fourth.
Walther Lutheran, Aurora Central Catholic, Chicago Christian and Montini rounded out the eight-team field.
"We always just focus on our game," said Marmion coach John Tsang, whose squad will begin its quest of defending its first sectional championship Friday at West Aurora. "The whole thing about carrying into the championship season is to be playing your best tennis."
The three Marmion doubles teams made the singles matches academic by not dropping a set in advancing to the championship round.
Jackson Rettig and John Graft continued the trend with a 6-1, 6-2 triumph over Wheaton Academy partners Reid Bartsche and Jack Bell at first doubles.
"My serve was better than in the past," said Rettig, who became a four-time conference champion with his first-year partner.
"Jackson is a good partner," said Graft, a junior. "We have good chemistry together."
The Cadets' No. 2 doubles tandem of Ricky Angsten and Kevin Hoss had a straight-sets triumph over St. Francis' Kevin Purdom and Tom Holsinger by identical scores of 6-3, 6-3.
All but mathematically assured of yet another team championship, Marmion golf teammates Brett Koskinen and Luke Hoss showcased different abilities in the spring to capture third doubles with a straight-sets victory over Wheaton Academy juniors James Drury and Matt Hamm.
"I'm sad to see (Koskinen) go," said Luke Hoss, a freshman. "We played well as a team."
Koskinen said the difference was the additional room in doubles play.
"We attacked the alleys a lot," the North Aurora resident said. "We were aggressive at the net."
At second singles, Marmion junior Dave Demoll put the finishing touches on the last of the Cadets' four conference titles by prevailing in a first-set tiebreaker over St. Francis' Matt Armbrust.
The second set was far less arduous for Demoll.
"I didn't make too many first serves, but I was able to score with my forehand," said Demoll, who won 7-6 (7-5) and 6-3.
"I think (Demoll) got to my backhand better than I was able to get to his," Armbrust said. "I couldn't dictate the points like I wanted to."
Sophomore Chris Chacko was St. Francis' last hope for a conference title, but Waters broke free from a three-deuce fourth game in the first set to win 6-2, 6-1.
"It was pretty big," Chacko said of the fourth game in which he was trying to break serve. "I was kind of out of it at that time."
"Third-doubles (Drury and Hamm) exceeded expectations," Wheaton Academy coach Matt Hockett said of the Warriors' overall day. "They weren't expected to make finals. We knew we were all playing for second (in the team race)."
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