Brad Nelson picked up right where Bob Kummer and Nelson’s girls team left off.
Nelson guided the Batavia boys tennis team to the Upstate Eight River Division conference championship Saturday in his first season as the boys coach, replacing the longtime boys coach Kummer.
“We won the girls one in the fall on these courts (at Elgin) actually. To come back in the spring with the guys is special to keep things going for coach Kummer with what he left us with after winning it last year,” Nelson said.
The Bulldogs were second coming into the conference meet. St. Charles East had the lead with 35 points. Batavia was second with 33, followed by St. Charles North (30) and Geneva (25).
Batavia was in six of the seven championship matches, winning three, to finish with 68 points. STC North also won three brackets and finished second (65). The Saints, who struggled Friday on the first day of the meet, won only one title — Connor Anderson and Steve Waynick at No. 3 doubles — and took third (62). Geneva was fourth with 51.
“We came through with some big wins in the semifinals (Friday),” Nelson said. “Those wins really set the table for us to be able to pull it out.”
Tim Murat won the No. 2 doubles bracket for the Bulldogs. He beat Geneva’s Nick McCarty, 6-2, 6-7 (9), 6-2 in the championship match.
“I felt I played overall OK,” Murat said. “The first and third sets were pretty solid. My second set was definitely not ideal.”
Batavia’s Josh Boyle and Andrew Nelson needed three sets, but beat STC North’s Mitch Riggs and Peter O’Brien, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2, in the championship match at No. 1 doubles. The Bulldogs also won the No. 4 doubles as Tom Guillemot and Emerson Hinzy beat North’s Thomas Ninan and Matthew Kramer, 6-1, 6-4.
The North Stars won three titles: Dominic Amalraj at No. 1 singles, Matt Ernst No. 3 singles and Grant Spellman and Keith Hedges at No. 1 doubles.
Amalraj, a senior, has won a conference title in each of this four seasons. In his freshman year he was at No. 3 singles. As a sophomore, he won No. 2 singles. Last year he played at No. 1 doubles.
Saturday, he beat Batavia’s Ryan Sterling, 6-3, 6-1, in the title match.
“I played well,” Amalraj said. “It was close to start, but as the match went on I got better.”
Ernst defeated the Bulldogs’ Drake Swift, 6-2, 7-5, in the No. 3 singles championship match.
Spellman and Hedges also won in a close two-set match. They defeated Batavia’s Adam Maris and Jeff Lorden, 6-4, 7-6 (5).
“They were a different style of play than the other teams we played,” Hedges said. “We just had to minimize our mistakes.”
The Saints had the one championship and five third-place finishes.
McCarty (No. 2 singles) and Quade Spellman and Curran McQuilkin (No. 3 doubles) had second-place finishes for Geneva.
Elgin had three fourth-place finishes — Reza Khan (No. 1 singles), Josh Hegel and Andy Chai (No. 2 doubles) and Austin Beruat and Nikolbe Theus (No. 3 doubles).Copyright © 2013 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.