It took Yorktown tennis player Ian Landwehr 33 minutes to win his opening match of the 2012 tennis sectional at Delta.
Soon after, his singles teammates quickly followed suit.
The Tigers locked up a win with a singles sweep early and a doubles split late for a 4-1 victory against Burris. In Wednesday’s other match, Central swept Southside, winning every match in straight sets, with the Rebels winning only seven games.
The Bearcats advanced to a match at 4:45 p.m. today against Delta, which is going for its 20th consecutive section title. Yorktown’s victory ensures it will face the winner of that match at 11 a.m. Saturday morning in the sectional finals.
Landwehr said Burris No. 1 Joey Shin began aggressively and put him on the defensive, but Landwehr came together late in the first set.
“I was stroking the ball well today,” said Landwehr, who won 6-1, 6-0. “Everything felt great. Everything felt smooth.”
Soon after he won that match, teammate Ian Helfert closed out his win at No. 2 singles, but Yorktown’s Eric Short had to battle before finally earning a 6-1, 7-5 victory against Ryan Xu.
A bright spot for Burris came at No. 1 doubles, where Jameson King and Kevin Joe won in three sets, remaining alive in the individual tournament.
“I know Yorktown’s singles has been their strength all year,” said Owls coach Drew DeHaven, who added he thought his team played well. “We knew that was going to be an uphill battle.”
Both DeHaven and Yorktown coach Jini Morgan put a good deal of stock in the doubles matches, and though her team lost the potential momentum of a clean sweep, Morgan was pleased with Short’s play at No. 3. She called him a backboard for the way he always manages to return shots, and she said he considered himself a golfer primarily before this season.
“He doesn’t usually make a lot of errors, but he’s really been working on a lot of things and working with our No. 1 singles player and getting some more weapons,” Morgan said.
Central wasted little time dispatching Southside as it snatched the top two singles spots and No. 1 doubles quickly to put the match away. First-year Southside coach Jason Ruffer said his young team had trouble in a strong sectional, and he actually told his team to watch its opponents for a sense of how strong teams go about their business. Bearcats coach Don Wafer said the biggest challenge was keeping his players focused.
The Bearcats kept their season alive, but ahead of them sits No. 22 Delta, with the weight of history behind it.
“It’s nice that we got through this, but now we face the beast,” Wafer said. “But the thing is, when we play them (today), I want to see how much we’ve improved from the beginning of the season. Because we did play them at the beginning, and I think we have improved.
“We know the odds are in their favor, but you just never know.”
Winchester, Jay County to meet in finals
Winchester swept Randolph Southern, while Jay County earned a sweep against Union City. The teams advanced to a meeting in the sectional finals at Jay County at 4:30 today.
Blue River beat Knightstown 4-1 in the opening match of the New Castle Sectional. The Vikings will play the host Trojans at 6 p.m. today in the sectional semifinals, following a matchup between Shenandoah and Tri at 4:30 p.m.
Marion beat Blackford 5-0 in the semifinals of the Marion Sectional.