MURFREESBORO – Coming out of virtually nowhere, Christ Presbyterian Academy has put itself right on the high school tennis roadmap.
CPA rolled through the season unbeaten, capped by a 4-2 victory over Christian Academy of Knoxville Wednesday morning in the girls Class A/AA Blue Cross team championship match at Old Fort Park.
It is the first state tennis championship in the school’s 23-year history.
Led once again by their freshmen tandem of Sydney Campbell and Kathy Schofield, the Lions (13-0) beat two traditional girls state powers Chattanooga Christian and CAK over the past two days.
Campbell and Scholfield easily won their two matches at No. 1 and 2 singles, losing one game between them. Campbell and Virginia Williams clinched the match with an 8-5 win at No. 1 doubles.
Fourth-year Coach Greg Seat saw it coming.
“Back in our fall meeting, I looked around the room and I saw so much talent,” Seat said. “I told the girls right then, if we don’t get to state, they should fire me.
“Once we got to state, I told them that I’ve done my job. Now that you made state, you need to do your job – the rest was up to them.”
Campbell, who finished the season 13-0, is the district and region singles champion and one of the favorites in the state A/AA individuals, which opens Thursday.
“I was hoping to win state when the season started, then I was expecting to win once we played so well when the tournaments started,” Campbell, the daughter of former BGA star baseball player Curt Campbell, said. “Coach Seat told us back in the fall we had the talent to get here, and to finally win it is truly awesome.”
“Nobody knew about us,” Seat said. “But I knew we had the talent. And it’s young – we have no seniors in the lineup – three freshmen (Campbell, Schofield and Virginia Williams) and two juniors (Natalie Seale and Addie Isaacs).”
Asked if that meant he would stay around to coach CPA at least three more years, Seat laughed and said, “I just need to take it one year at a time.”
USN falls short in DII-A
University School of Nashville saw its two-year reign as DII-A boys team champs come to an end as Knoxville Webb (which dropped down from AA this year) stopped the Tigers 4-0 in the finals Wednesday.
USN finished 9-2 in team matches, losing only to Brentwood and Webb.
“We had chances,” coach Russell Buchi said. “Michael Stephanides and Gary Falcon both won their first sets, and Alex Metzman was up 4-3 early. The score was a bit misleading. Credit Webb, they are a well-coached and a very disciplined team.
“I hope our guys work hard this summer and come back even hungrier and stronger than ever. We have a young team and we should only get better.”
Brentwood, Ravenwood take titles
Williamson County powerhouses Brentwood High (boys) and Ravenwood (girls) won team championships in Class AAA.
Lauren Cebalos won in straight sets at No. 1 singles, then she and Madison Strekovich won the clinching point at No. 1 doubles, 9-8, to give the Raptors the school’s first team tennis title with a 4-2 win over White Station.
Led by ace Drake Hernandez, Brentwood blanked McMinn County 4-0, giving the Bruins their first title since 2005.
“We played strong throughout the lineup,” said Hernandez, who was state singles runnerup last year as a freshman. “It’s all due to our coach Andy Veal, who is a great coach, makes things so fun. If he had been around last year, I think we would be going for four straight titles by the time we’d be seniors.”