Boys tennis: Jacobs looking forward to FVC challenges
Expectations are high for the Jacobs boys tennis team in 2022.
The Golden Eagles under the guidance of Jon Betts finished fourth in the state in Class 2A a year ago. Betts was the 2A Coach of the Year.
The 2022 Golden Eagles are led by Thomas Nelson, fifth in the state in singles year ago.
Nelson, who is the top singles player returning in the state, will continue his career at Division I Marquette next season.
Nelson is 12-1 fresh off a 3-0 record and a tournament championship at No. 1 singles in the rigorous Maine South tournament. Nelson's only loss came to St. Louis University High School's Gus Tettamble, who is the top singles player in Missouri and a Tulane commit.
Kyle McNally, who was sixth in the state in 2021, has decided to play in USTA tournaments forgoing his junior season for the Eagles.
Jacobs scored 10 points to finish third at the Maine South on April 16. The host Hawks were first with 12, followed by York (11).
Augie Nelson, Thomas's brother, was third at No. 2 singles. The No. 1 doubles team of Justin Cunningham and Jed Sia were second.
The No. 2 doubles team of Austin Dinh and Ryan Fulton were fourth and the third doubles team of Brandon Japkowski and Sam Knuerr was fifth.
The FVC meet hosted by Dundee-Crown will be May 13 and May 14. Jacobs will probably be used as a site for the meet. The Eagles are the defending conference champs.
"Huntley and Cary look strong," said Betts. "Prairie Ridge is the most improved team in the conference."
Jacobs hosts an 8-team dual meet on May 7. The Eagles welcome Bartlett, Grant, Carmel, Grayslake North, Lake Forest, Rockford Christian and St. Viator to Algonquin. Jacobs will also send a varsity group to the York Invitational in Elmhurst that day.
Cary-Grove coach Amanda Schuetzle had a keen interest on the No. 1 singles match when her Trojans met Crystal Lake South in FVC action on April 12. Cary defeated South 6-1.
The only win for the Gators come from Jackson Schuetzle, Amanda's son. Jackson will play tennis at Division III Case Reserve in Cleveland next season.
"Jackson's back is bothering him." said Amanda. "He needs to be wise when to play and when not to play. It is a learning process. He is not to used to pick and choosing his matches."
Crystal Lake South coach Rick Bailey is bringing Schuetzle along slowly. The Gator senior was 1-1 at the Naperville North tournament on April 16.
"Being out of commission since November to start playing competitively takes time with regards to timing and consistency," said the veteran coach. "He is working hard trying to make up time he lost.
"So far, he has no back issues. I believe he will get back to where he wants to be soon."
The Trojans finished second at the Harlem Invite last Saturday. Glenbrook North was first, followed by Cary-Grove and Homewood Flossmoor.
Sam Kedzior (No. 1) and Noah Marrano (No. 2) were third, and Brandon Burtschi-Bryce Shectman (No. 1) and Tom Fornelli and Dan Jauch at No. 2 were second.
Cary-Grove will host a 2A sectional May 20-21.
Huntley is led by the doubles team of Ben Hein and Matt Grubbs, who are 3-0.
Barry Wells' crew will participate at the Grayslake North Invitational Saturday.
"This week we will see how we stack up in the conference," said Wells. "It is a big week."