Brophy boys tennis looks to continue run

Brophy boys tennis looks to continue run

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Brophy boys tennis looks to continue run

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It can be difficult to sustain greatness in high school sports. With only four years to develop and improve their players, coaches must quickly figure out how to get the most out of their team, and contenders can fluctuate from year to year.

In boys tennis, however, Phoenix Brophy Prep is having itself a nice little run.

Brophy won the Division I team championship last season, its third title in four years. It will go for four out of five this year, and its chances look pretty good.

Seniors Kyle Chalmers and Hudson Blake return, and with last year’s state runner-up Scottsdale Desert Mountain losing four of its top six players from a season ago, it remains to be seen if anyone will be able to step up and challenge Brophy.

Scottsdale Chaparral, Chandler Hamilton and Tempe Corona del Sol all field strong teams, but it may not be enough.

“It’s likely Brophy,” Chaparral coach Greg Basila said, “and the rest.”

In Division II, Oro Valley Ironwood Ridge is also a strong favorite to repeat.

After defeating Cave Creek Cactus Shadows for the title last season, Ironwood Ridge will have five seniors on its roster in 2013, including Alex Bose and Cody Petford. Petford was one-half of the state runner-up doubles team last season.

A southern Arizona rivalry could be heating up, as Tucson Catalina Foothills should be improved and will have revenge on its mind after losing to Ironwood Ridge in last year’s quarterfinals.

Cactus Shadows and Scottsdale Notre Dame Prep will be in the mix again, and wild cards like Buckeye Verrado and Prescott Valley Bradshaw Mountain will look to shake up the brackets come tournament time.

Thatcher won the Division III team title last season, defeating No. 6 seed Tucson Pusch Ridge Christian 5-3 in the championship round.

Those two teams could meet again in the state tournament this season, although likely not in the finals, and Gilbert Christian, Goodyear Estrella Foothills and Cottonwood Mingus also have a chance at the title.

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