Richard Davis is optimistic that Polk County’s boys tennis team can be a factor in the Western Highlands Conference race this season.
The Wolverines have an opportunity Thursday to take the first step toward that proving that hope to be sound.
Polk County tuned up Wednesday for its WHC opener with Hendersonville, downing North Henderson 5-4 in a non-conference match at Polk. The Wolverines won four singles matches and picked up the winning point at No. 1 doubles to improve to 2-3 on the season.
Now Polk can turn its focus to Thursday’s home match with the Bearcats and opening WHC play with a victory.
“The competition that we’ve been playing has been pretty good,” Davis said. “We’re playing teams that are good and are traditionally pretty good, and we’ve done reasonably well.
“I think we’re sort of a happy middle team. We’re certainly not bad. We’ll see what happens (Thursday). That will give us an idea of where we stand one way or the other.”
Polk County got wins from its top three singles players – Tyler Oxtoby, Payton Stott and Henry Monts – on Wednesday as well as a victory from Malik Miller at No. 6 singles. Oxtoby and Monts then recorded an 8-0 win at No. 1 doubles to assure the Wolverines of the win. Miller and Rustin Muse nearly added a win at No. 3 doubles, but a late service break allowed North’s Pratik Merchant and Danny Diaz to hold on for an 8-6 win.
1. Tyler Oxtoby (PC) d. Austin Tran 10-0; 2. Payton Stott (PC) d. Juan Chavez 10-8; 3. Henry Monts (PC) d. Harel Alipio 10-0; 4. Jacob Randall (NH) d. Alec Becker 10-3; 5. Pratik Merchant (NH) d. Rustin Muse 10-4; 6. Malik Miller (PC) d. Danny Diaz 10-3.
1. Oxtoby/Monts (PC) d. Tran/Chavez 8-0; 2. Alipio/Randall (NH) d. Stott/Becker 8-4; 3. Merchant/Diaz (NH) d. Muse/Miller 8-6.