It took three sets to decide, but Triton senior Daniel Snyder prevailed over Smithfield-Selma senior Nathan Hoyt to capture the boys’ singles tennis title in the Two Rivers 3A Conference.
Snyder defeated Hoyt 7-5, 5-7, 6-4 and secured his spot in the regional tennis tournament next week in Wilson.
“I was a little nervous at first but as I started longer I found my rhythm,” said Snyder.
The loss in the conference final was the first loss in conference all season for Hoyt, who was 7-0 in conference singles matches leading up to Wednesday’s championships at Smithfield-Selma.
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“I played three other matches and I was just super tired to begin with,” said Hoyt.
The final four players of the singles tournament qualify for regionals next week. Both Snyder and Hoyt will compete, as well as Smithfield-Selma senior Cole Davis and Cleveland junior Ethan Smith.
“I’m pretty excited but I’m kind of shocked that I got in,” said Davis. “The person I had to play to make regionals (Corinth Holders senior Harper Lock) I lost to earlier in the season in a tiebreaker.”
Davis’ upset over Lock in the quarterfinals was essentially the only thing that went wrong for the Corinth Holders Pirates all day.
“I was a little disappointed with my No. 1 singles player (Lock),” said Corinth Holders coach Chris Davis. “He lost in the quarterfinals and he really should have gone deeper. It’s just one of those days when you play back-to-back matches.”
Corinth juniors Thad Reickley and Thomas Dunn brought home the doubles title for the Pirates with a 6-1, 6-1 victory over Triton juniors Riley Adkins and Theo Gregoire.
“The last match we actually played better,” said Reickley. “Before that we kind of struggled a little bit but we did good in the end.”
Both doubles teams in the championship qualify for the regional doubles tournament next week. Reickley and Dunn will be joined by Adkins and Gregoire as well as the other two semifinal doubles teams from Cleveland and South Johnston.
“We’re excited about the regionals but we’ll definitely have to do some practicing before then,” said Adkins.
Corinth Holders maintained the team title after a perfect 9-0 season in conference to secure their fourth conference championship in their seven years as a school.
“This has been the most fulfilling year because we weren’t as deep and as stacked as we’ve been in years past,” said Davis. “These guys had an unrelenting will to come out on top, even against teams that were evenly matched with us.”