Ironwood Ridge stops Notre Dame's unbeaten streak to claim Division II title

Ironwood Ridge stops Notre Dame's unbeaten streak to claim Division II title

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Ironwood Ridge stops Notre Dame's unbeaten streak to claim Division II title

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Whoever said tennis is not a team sport has never been to a high school title match.

Case in point: The Division II boys team final between undefeated Scottsdale Notre Dame Prep and defending state champion Oro Valley Ironwood Ridge.

After Notre Dame rallied from four matches down, it rallied to tie the score at 4 and held a 7-4 lead at No. 2 doubles, with the match playing to 10 games.

However, Ironwood Ridge’s Alex Bose and Ryan Knox came back to win six consecutive games and the state championship 10-7, snapping Notre Dame’s undefeated streak.

“It just shows that hard work pays off,” Knox, a sophomore, said. “You give it your all and you get it in the end.”

It once looked like Ironwood Ridge would breeze to victory.

Ironwood Ridge jumped out to a quick start in singles by winning five of the first six sets. It wasn’t long until Ironwood Ridge had a four-match lead with five needed to win the trophy.

Notre Dame’s No. 2 singles player Luke Carstens put his team on the board with a 6-4, 7-6 (2) win.

Notre Dame needed to win the No. 1 singles match to stay alive.

Bose and Notre Dame’s Adrian Cordova played the longest match, lasting almost three hours. Bose won the first set, but Cordova fought back to win the match in three sets 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, forcing the match into doubles.

Notre Dame needed to sweep all three doubles matches to win the championship.

“It gave them a little momentum going into doubles,” Ironwood Ridge Coach Ryan Bais said. “Because they knew had they lost it would have been over.”

Notre Dame made quick work at the Nos. 1 and 3 spots in doubles, winning 10-5 and 10-4, respectively.

That tied the match score at 4-4 and put the result of the match into the No. 2 doubles match, setting up Bose and Knox’s comeback heroics.

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