Wave tennis enters playoffs with strong odds at advancing to state
The goal of reaching the state tournament is still alive for the Greenwave boys and girls tennis teams.
After both teams lost in the regional team championships last week in Reno, Fallon competes in the singles and doubles portion of the tournament today and Saturday at the Tahoe Donner Tennis Center in Truckee. The top three advance to the state tournament next week at the Darling Tennis Center in Las Vegas.
Both Fallon teams lost to South Tahoe by the same score, 14-4, last week in the team tournament and the Greenwave will seek redemption this weekend. Fallon’s best chance at reaching state lies with its top doubles teams.
The senior duo of Myles Getto and Blake Malkovich were awarded the No. 2 seed in doubles and they will face No. 15 Jeremiah Dahl and Ian Smith of South Tahoe in the second round. Getto and Malkovich were nearly unstoppable this season as they finished with a 22-3 record in the regular season.
“It’s just about putting it together. Myles and Blake are more talented,” Fallon boys’ coach Jesse Nuckolls said. “That Truckee team (the No. 1 seed) is more disciplined. If my guys can get it together discipline-wise, they should have no problem. Either way, they’ve got a good shot at going to state. I’m looking forward to watching these guys.”
No. 5 Thomas Jamieson and Alex Perazzo take on No. 12 Rocket Bryan and Lucas Valois of North Tahoe. Jamieson and Perazzo competed in singles during the regular season but Nuckolls feels strongly that pairing the two give Fallon its best chance of sending another team to state.
“They really play well as a doubles team. We’ve been practicing doubles hard the last couple of weeks,” Nuckolls said. “They’ve got a real legitimate chance. It’s a pretty good match when they play against my No. 1 doubles team. They can pull off some surprises. Potentially, we can get two teams to state, and that’s exciting.”
Rounding out Fallon’s doubles are No. 8 Compton Lords and Josh Mikulak, who finished with a 12-11 record and compete against No. 9 Tristan Cayolle and Dillon Hudson of North Tahoe.
“They have their work cut out for them. That’s going to be really tough for them,” Nuckolls said of his team, who could face the No. 1 team if they win.”
For the girls, No. 3 Brynlee Shults and Brooklyn Whitaker received a bye in the second round and will face the winner of No. 6 Theresa Sandborne and Lauren Schwartz (South Tahoe) and No. 11 Diana Martinez and Sophia Reed (Incline). Like their counterparts, Shults, a first-year starter as a senior, and Whitaker, a second-year starting sophomore, have been dominant throughout the season. They finished with a 23-4 record.
“When I first saw them playing, they’re both naturally athletic,” Fallon girls’ coach Kristy Bekiares said. “I wasn’t surprised that they were doing well together. As we went on, they were just winning. They’re a pretty good match. They feed off of each other. It’s going to be really good.”
No. 8 Nicole Klein and Selene Montes face No. 9 Millie Jenkins and Lily Price of Incline in the second round.
“They’re enjoying themselves this year and hope to see them back next year,” Bekiares said.
Junior Jamie Bekiares (20-4) is Fallon’s highest seed in singles player for either team as she, the No. 5 player, faces No. 12 Saray Salazar of Sparks in the second round. No. 8 Ashby Trotter (12-15) faces No. 9 Lyndsey Allen of South Tahoe while No. 13 Abigail Ritts (6-12) faces No. 4 Becky Ziegler of Truckee. The winner of Ritts’ bout faces the winner of Bekiares and Salazar.
“The concern is she’ll do good in the first round and face Becky in the second and could get knocked out,” coach Bekiares said of the potential second-round matchup. “Everyone is a tough match. She’ll be working to get that match for state.”
All three boys singles players, who played doubles during the regular season, received a double-digit seed with Nathaniel Klein leading the team as the No. 10 player. Klein faces No. 7 Juan Vasquez of South Tahoe while Fallon’s Ben Jamieson, seeded 12th, takes on Incline’s Dalton Fry, the No. 5 seed, in the second round. Ryan Lords, seeded No. 13, faces No. 4 Murphy Scott of North Tahoe with the winner taking on the winner of the Jamieson-Fry bout.
“They are normally used to playing doubles. They definitely have a challenge ahead of them,” Nuckolls said. “There are some really good guys out there. They know they’ve got a challenge ahead of them.”