The Cypress Lake boys tennis team’s run through the Class 2A tournament ended Tuesday at the hands of Miami Gulliver Prep at Red Bug Lake Park in Casselberry.
After earning a victory in No. 1 doubles between the play of seniors Zachary Blythe and Cason Hiers, the Panthers lost four straight singles matches to fall 4-1.
“We’re definitely happy about how far we got, but we’re disappointed with how it ended,” Hiers said. “We thought we had a great chance. But, all said, we realize how special the season was.”
“We had high expectations this year and I think we met expectations,” Blythe said. “Maybe we even went a little beyond them. I’m really proud of the guys for that.”
Hiers and Blythe began the day with a 2-6, 6-3, 10-8 win over Gulliver Prep’s Andrew Libnic and Christian Otero. In the other doubles match, the Panthers’ Jose Camacho and Logan Glock fell to Ryan Hellinger and Nicolas Ramirez 6-0, 6-0.
However, things started to fall apart in singles play. Cypress Lake was unable to match the technical ability and speed of the Tigers, who returned to the courts as the Class 2A runner-ups from a season ago.
Ramirez grabbed a victory against Hiers in the No. 2 game with a 6-2, 6-1 score, then Otero pounced on Camacho in the No. 3 match with a 6-3, 6-2 result.
To seal things, the Tigers finished the match in the No. 5 game, with Ryan Hellinger defeating Cypress Lake’s Nolan Nowak in straight sets, 6-0, 6-0.
By then, Blythe’s game on the No. 1 court, while not completed, ended. The same went for No. 4 player Logan Glock.
While Blythe was disappointed with the result, he did admit that his team faced the best opponent he’s seen all season.
“100 percent,” he said of the Tigers. “They had a full lineup. They ran deep into their lineup and had a good team through 3, 4 and 5.”
Class 2A boys tennis tournament
Miami Gulliver Prep 4, Cypress Lake 1: Singles: 2. Nicolas Ramirez (GP) d. Cason Hiers 6-2, 6-1; 3. Christian Otero (GP) d. Jose Camacho 6-3, 6-2; 5. Ryan Hellinger (GP) d. Nolan Nowak 6-0, 6-0. Doubles: 1. Zachary Blythe-Hiers (CL) d. Andre Libnic-Otero 2-6, 6-3, 10-8; 2. Hellinger-Ramirez (GP) d. Camacho-Glock.