Boys tennis: Wheaton Academy nets title at Geneva

  • St. Charles East's Zach Kaczka returns a shot in his first doubles match against Huntley at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday.

      St. Charles East's Zach Kaczka returns a shot in his first doubles match against Huntley at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • St. Charles East's Collin Johnson pounds the ball directly over the net in his first doubles match against Huntley at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday.

      St. Charles East's Collin Johnson pounds the ball directly over the net in his first doubles match against Huntley at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Geneva's Eric Anderson returns a backhand in his first double match against Oswego at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday.

      Geneva's Eric Anderson returns a backhand in his first double match against Oswego at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Geneva's Eric Anderson returns a shot in his first double match against Oswego at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday.

      Geneva's Eric Anderson returns a shot in his first double match against Oswego at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Huntley's Julian Collins returns a shot as first doubles partner Jack Adams watches at the Geneva invitational Saturday.

      Huntley's Julian Collins returns a shot as first doubles partner Jack Adams watches at the Geneva invitational Saturday. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • St. Charles East's Collin Johnson returns a shot in his first doubles match against Huntley.

      St. Charles East's Collin Johnson returns a shot in his first doubles match against Huntley. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • St. Charles East's Zach Kaczka returns a shot in his first doubles match against Huntley at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday.

      St. Charles East's Zach Kaczka returns a shot in his first doubles match against Huntley at the Geneva boys tennis invitational Saturday. John Starks | Staff Photographer

 
By Jared Birchfield
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 4/13/2019 8:44 PM

Wheaton Academy won three of the four championship matches to capture the Geneva Invitational Saturday.

The Warriors, who finished fourth in Class 1A last season, won both doubles titles and second singles to earn 22 points.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"These guys are super hard workers. A bunch of them have put in a lot of work in the off-season," said first-year Wheaton Academy coach Chip Dykema. "I think what you see here today is just reaping some of those benefits. We have a lot of depth -- we are blessed with that."

Huntley parlayed three third place finishes to score 13 points for second place.

"We lost some close matches in the semifinals that cost us a little bit but overall I think we played really well," Huntley coach Barry Wells said. "We were very consistent -- we had some good matches."

The host Vikings (9 points) finished third with two second place finishes.

"It's the best we have done in the last few years, taking third," said Geneva coach Ryan Barabasz. "We were only a couple points behind second and we were actually missing one player today (one singles player Andrew Borse) so everyone played up."

This year was Barabasz' first time as a coach at the invite. Also a Geneva alum, he competed in the tournament as a student.

Wheaton Academy's Owen Setran and Devin Greeno beat the Huntley duo of Julian Collins and Jack Adams in straight sets (6-0, 6-1) to win the first doubles title.

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"Our first doubles, that's a new combination. I think in the three matches that they played today, each one got better," Dykema said. "The third match, they lost the first game and then put it into a different gear and played so well."

"My partner and I had great communication and we were able to keep high intensity throughout the day," said Greeno, a junior. "We played some great players and we were able to find the grove and keep in the grove all day."

Teammates Tristan Hilson and Graham Shelton edged Geneva's Kyle Fisher and Joel Peruba 6-0, 6-0 to take the second doubles crown.

Aidan Hilson, freshman brother of Tristan, won the second singles title, beating Viking Cal McKittrick in straight sets, 6-3, 6-2.

"(Hilson) really dominated at the net. I needed to put some better shots when he was up there," McKittrick said. "I liked my serve, it was working very well but I just couldn't make enough plays at the net."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Gabriel Sardo of Oswego spoiled the Wheaton Academy sweep attempt when he edged Jacob Williams, 6-4, 6-2, to earn first place in first singles.

Huntley took third place honors in both singles competition and in second doubles. Saarav Desai downed Conner Wrigley from Lincoln Way East for the third place medal in first singles. Thomas Patel finished third in the second singles competition with a win over Elliott Churchill of St. Charles East.

The Red Raiders' second doubles team of Justin Schee and Andrew Burkey beat IMSA's Ram Kakinara and Hari Kumarakrishnan in the second doubles third place match.

"Today was actually our second time playing together and we had some great chemistry out there," said Burkey "We were getting balls back in play, finding the open spots and making the right choices."

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