As expected, the top three of the Cap-8 dominated the boys tennis conference championships on Wednesday at Millbrook Exchange Park.
Millbrook junior Mohamed Almontaser breezed past Enloe sophomore Ethan Saber 6-3, 6-0 to claim the singles crown.
The Wakefield duo of juniors Blake Carter and Nico Grewe won a hotly contested doubles crown over Enloe sophomore Michale Ogundele and senior Rohan Chandrasekhar by a 6-4, 7-6 (11-9) count to make sure that the Wolverines got one Cap-8 title.
The finals losses were tough for the regular-season champion Eagles, who wanted to leave a mark on the tournament as well said Ogundele.
“(Wakefield and Millbrook) have a reputation for winning,” he said. “A change is coming, we know that. We want to be that change. But, to their credit, they were the ones today. They got us.”
Top-seeded Carter-Grewe relished the victory, as the two had been involved in the singles championship the past two seasons. Grewe lost as a freshman, but topped Carter in 2015.
“It means so much,” Carter said. “Wakefield has won a title all three years we have been here and we wanted to continue that.”
Grewe, who forced Chandrasekhar to hit into the net with a powerful shot on match point, reacted with a pumped fist and loud scream.
“We definitely weren’t playing well,” Grewe said. “But seeing all the people in the stands, and seeing our coach (Ken Stewart) looking at us, we knew we had to pick it up. He was expecting big things.”
Losing a break early was crucial in the first set, Chandrasekhar said, but they rallied and were serving up 5-4 in the second.
“We had something like six set points,” Chandrasekhar said. “And we didn’t finish them off. I think we got a little tight, and Wakefield, they came hard.”
The match swung on a crucial call during the tiebreaker. With Enloe up 6-5, Ogundele served past Carter, but the call was wide.
“We get that point, we go on and win,” Chandrasekhar said. “But we didn’t. And that’s tennis. You’ve got to move on.”
Almontaser’s power game overwhelmed the finesse style of Saber. In all, the No. 4-seed gave up just 11 points in four matches.
“My game is to push and put pressure on my opponent offensively,” said Almontaser. “My serve, it decided the match. When it was good, I went on the offensive quickly. When I had to go to my second, I’d go on the defensive until I saw a place to attack.”
No. 2 seed Saber was broken once early in losing the first set and three times in the second.
“Mo was just making everything today,” Saber said. “He made it very hard for me to get anything going.”
Enloe got two fifths as Shantanu Sharma beat Leesville Road’s Owen Langlois in singles and Revanth Bobba-Jurious Whitaker beat Sanderson’s Scott Pickard-Hunter Moore in doubles. The Wildcats had Matthew and Michael Cooper top teammates Austin Cobb-Josiah Schainblatt for third. Wakefield’s Lake Ihly beat teammate Mike Portera 2-1, retired, for third.