Spring Fling: Reddy brothers spark USN to tennis title

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 4:22am
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Mike Strasinger for The City Paper

MURFREESBORO — You might say University School of Nashville was more than Reddy to win a second straight state tennis championship.

Senior ace Sreyas Reddy and freshman brother Sathvik Reddy helped lead USN to its second straight boys DII-A state crown, the first two in the school’s history.

Sathvik scored the clinching point, collecting a 6-4, 6-3 victory over Ben Orgel, clinching a 4-0 shutout victory over Memphis Lausanne Wednesday afternoon on the Middle Tennessee State University courts in the annual Blue Cross Spring Fling competition.

“This was awesome, a great feeling,’’ Sathvik said. “I didn’t actually realize it was the clinching match until Alex (Metzman) came out and high-fived me, and told me we had won it. I’m really happy for our team and our school.’’

Although he didn’t complete his match Wednesday, Srevas proved key in the Tigers’ match to the title. He was in the middle of the second set of his match at No. 1 singles with Jason Alabaster. That came after his brother, along with Metzman, Michael Stephanides and Michael King had collected straight-set victories in the 1½-hour match.

“It’s a dream come true for me and team — winning back-to-back championships to finish my senior year,’’ said Sreyas, the lone senior who is headed to Rhodes to continue playing tennis. “We are the first to win a state championship for school in tennis.’’

“Sreyas is an exceptional leader,’’ said co-coach Nancy Plantz, whose team also swept St. George’s 4-0 in the semifinals Tuesday.

“He led by example with his enthusiasm, leadership and temperament. I am so proud of him and so proud of how our team played not just today but throughout the season.’’

“This is very exciting,’’ added co-coach Russell Buchi, holder of numerous Nashville city singles championships. “The team performed to about 100 percent of their ability, and they truly deserve this.’’

USN girls fall short: USN’s girls fell short in their bid to make it a two-team sweep for school as the Tigers lost to St. George’s 4-2 in the girls DII-A final. It was the second straight year USN lost in the final.

Ace Kate Johnson and Thalia Spinard at No. 5 scored singles victories, leaving USN behind 3-2 but pushing the match into doubles play. But Johnson and Morgan Wilkes lost at No. 1 doubles to end the match.

“We made a great run at it,’’ said Plantz who also coaches the girls. “Kate had a strong win at No. 1 and Thalia had a big three-set win which got us to doubles. We should be strong next year as only Olivia Doochin (at No. 3 singles) graduates.’’

Doochin, who is headed to the University of Texas, said, “even though we lost, we’ve had great run. I’ve loved my teammates and the togetherness we’ve had. It has been so exciting and amazing. I’m glad I was a part of out building process.’’

Spinard rallied to beat Britt Paul of St. George’s 3-6, 7-5, 6-4 in the most competitive match of the day, to pull USN to within 3-2 to send the match to doubles play.

Science Hill blanks Brentwood: Led by ace Chris Smith at No. 1 singles, Johnson City Science Hill blanked Brentwood High 4-0 to win its third straight Class AAA boys team tennis title. Smith stormed past BHS ace Alex Howard 6-2, 6-3, keying the win.

Leading the match 3-0, the Toppers clinched when Michael Chen edged Greg Center 7-6, 7-6 at No. 3 singles. The second tie-breaker went back-and-forth with set points and match points galore before Clark finally won it 15-13 and was immediately mobbed by teammates. Science Hill also won the girls title.