KENNEWICK — Kennewick High School defeated Walla Walla in the top two singles spots Thursday in a Mid-Columbia Conference boys tennis match, but from there it was all Walla Walla as the Blue Devils picked up a 5-2 victory over the host Lions.
“We had some really, really tough singles matches,” Wa-Hi coach Bryan Eggart said. “We knew our top three singles matches were going to be really tough and they were all three-setters. We got done at 7:45 last night, it was our longest match of the year.”
Wa-Hi’s Connor Christensen and Zach Anderson fell at the No. 1 and 2 spots before Andrew Bateman picked up Wa-Hi’s first win of the day. He defeated Mitchell Way, 6-4, 6-7 and 6-4 in a marathon of a match.
“Bateman had our best singles match of the day,” Eggart said.
At the No. 4 spot, Nick Fuller was the only Blue Devil to sweep his singles opponent.
Wa-Hi sliced through the Lions in the doubles matches, with all three Blue Devil teams winning in straight sets.
“I thought in doubles we had great showings across the board,” Eggart said. “I’m very proud of our doubles players for doing a geat job, we knew we had to get those doubles wins to get a team win and they pulled it out.”
The Blue Devils improve to 7-2 on the season, with Wa-Hi’s only losses coming to league-leading and undefeated Richland.
Districts begin Friday and run through Saturday of next week at Pasco High School.
The top two singles players and top two doubles teams will advance to regionals.
At singles, Eggart said he expected Christensen and Josh Kuznetsov, who was sick for Thursday’s match, to make pushes for regionals play.
“Hopefully between the the two of them one of them, one should get in,” Eggart said.
And at doubles, Bateman and Fuller should have a good shot at regionals after the duo paired up to place second at the Tri-Cities Invite in April.
“I think they’ll have a good shot to finish top two in doubles,” Eggart said. “We had a strong showing (at the Invite), hopefully we can keep going and produce some strong regionals competitors.”
WALLA WALLA 5, KENNEWICK 2
SINGLES — Chad McKenzie, Ken, def. Connor Christensen, WW, 6-1, 2-6, 6-1. Jared Bold, Ken, def. Zach Anderson, WW, 7-6, 3-6, 6-2. Andrew Bateman, WW, def. Mitchell Way, Ken, 6-4, 6-7, 6-4. Nick Fuller, WW, def. Kylan Becho, Ken, 6-0, 6-0.
DOUBLES — Douglas Rowley/Parker Toon, WW, def. Caleb Leavitt/Aaron Moses, Ken, 6-2, 6-3. Micah Rambo/Malcolm Gabbard, WW, def. Mason Kippert/Luis Vargas, Ken, 6-0, 6-0. Cole Woelfle/Gerrod Peck, WW, def. Jude Htun/David Kohan, Ken, 6-0, 6-2.