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MHS boys’ tennis comes in seventh at Topeka High

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Two days removed from a near-first place finish at Junction City, Manhattan came in seventh out of 12 teams at Topeka High on Monday. The Indians finished with 25 points, while Topeka High took first on the day with 42.

“Today was a pretty frustrating day, but as a whole, the kids played well,” head coach Brandon Starkey said. “This was probably the most difficult meet we have gone to this season, and we didn’t have our full varsity team and suffered an unfortunate injury but still managed to finish seventh despite forfeiting the majority of our No. 1 doubles matches.”

Manhattan had to forfeit all but two of its No. 1 doubles matches because of a hamstring/groin strain to Mitch Hutchinson in the first match. He and Carson Gido went 0-2 and finished in 12th place. The duo lost the opening match to Declan Forth and Jialun Wang of Lawrence Free State, 8-4. Hutchinson tried to play the second match but couldn’t move well enough to continue after that. Hutchinson and Gido lost their second match, 8-2, to Kaden Jobe and Chase Schreiner of Maize.

Starkey said he hopes Hutchinson will be back in a week or two, but that makes him a question mark for the Centennial League tournament.

Andrew Suh made his varsity debut in the No. 2 singles and went 2-4, taking eighth place. He opened play with an 8-7 (8-6) win over Adonnis Washington of Junction City before losing to Kender Acevedo of Garden City, 8-4. He came back to beat Luke Hetrick of Wichita Wast, 8-4, before losing to Connor Gooding of Maize, 8-5, Topeka High’s Chris Gernon, 8-1, and Davis Steadman of Lawrence Free State, 8-1.

In No. 1 singles, Bryce Easton was solid, going 5-1 and coming in third. He opened with wins over Shawnee Heights’ Omar de la Torre (8-0), Liam El of Lawrence Free State (8-2), Garrett Kipp of Garden City (8-2) and Mat Caudill of Topeka High (8-0) before losing a tiebreaker to Garrett Rodgers of Valley Center, 8-7 (7-2). He came back and beat Jarrett Bowman of Derby, 8-3.

Starkey was pleased with how his No. 2 doubles team of Jerin Ugrin and Robert Zhang played. They went 4-2 and took fifth place. They opened with three straight wins, beating Guido Greco and Mason Richards of Junction City (8-2), Marcus Rodriguez and Stephen Caudill of Topeka High (8-0) and Jacobe Shove and Drew Bott of Maize (8-4). The pair dropped its next two matches, 8-4 to Brady Wells and Daniel Dunn of Derby and 8-4 to Valley Center’s Scott McCune and Brandon McClure before taking their final match, 8-4 over Brian Carrera and Daniel Chacon of Garden City.

Starkey will have to tweak his lineup ahead of Tuesday’s quad meet at Emporia.

Topeka High
Team Standings
1. Topeka High 42, 2. Derby 41, 3. Valley Center 40, T-4. Garden City 33, T-4. Maize 33, 6. Lawrence Free State 26, 7. Manhattan 25, 8. Junction City 24, 9. Wichita East 14, 10. Topeka West 13, 11. Troy (Topeka High B) 11, 12. Shawnee Heights 5.
No. 1 singles
Bryce Easton (5-1) third place
No. 2 singles
Andrew Suh (2-4) eighth place
No. 1 doubles
Mitch Hutchinson/Carson Gido (0-2) 12th place
No. 2 doubles
Robert Zhang/Jerin Ugrin (4-2) fifth place

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