Phoenix Brophy Prep claims Division I boys tennis title

Phoenix Brophy Prep claims Division I boys tennis title


Phoenix Brophy Prep claims Division I boys tennis title


Bill Woods has been the boys tennis coach at Phoenix Brophy Prep for 20 years. And only once in his tenure had his team accomplished what it pulled off this season.

Top-seeded Brophy defeated No. 3 Tucson Salpointe Catholic 5-0 in the Division I team championship Saturday at Paseo Racquet Center in Glendale, capping a clean sweep for Brophy of the singles, doubles and team titles.

It’s the first time since 1997 that Brophy has claimed championships in all three categories, a testament to the depth of its lineup and the work that its players have put in.

“It’s more than just the season,” Woods said. “It’s what they do throughout the 12 months (of the year). They’ve made amazing progress in their games.”

After senior Hudson Blake won the singles title and sophomores David Akin and Michael Cowan took home the doubles championship April 27, Brophy set out to complete the trifecta Saturday and did so with relative ease.

Sophomore J.J. Good landed the first blow with a 6-4, 6-1 victory, and minutes later senior Kyle Chalmers completed his 6-0, 7-5 win.

Sophomore Zach Cihlar followed, winning 6-4, 6-4, and then Akin pulled out a victory in a hard-fought match that went 7-5, 7-6 (7-4 in the tiebreak).

Once sophomore Christian Franco scored the final point of his 7-5, 6-2 win, the celebration was on.

Perhaps the only drawback of the quick win was that it halted an excellent match between Blake and fellow No. 1 Yash Parikh of Salpointe. Parikh, a freshman, won the first set 7-6 (7-4) and got out to a 5-2 lead on Blake in the second set. Blake reeled off wins in three consecutive games to tie the set at 5 before Franco’s victory rendered Blake and Parikh’s result moot.

“There was some relief, but there was also some disappointment in the fact that I couldn’t finish,” Blake said. “It was such a big comeback, and I knew I could’ve done it. But I’m just happy we got the state championship.”

The title was Brophy’s second consecutive and fourth in five years, and the team could be in position to make it three in a row next season.

“We had four sophomores in our singles lineup (Saturday),” Woods said. “So we should be coming back next year pretty strong.”


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