Tennis | Boys Class A individual state tournament preview
Who: The first and second-place finishers in singles and doubles out of the eight section tournaments.
When, where: Thursday and Friday at the Reed-Sweatt Family Tennis Center in Minneapolis.
Singles times: The first round is 8 a.m. Thursday, followed by quarterfinals at noon. Semifinals are 8 a.m. Friday, followed by finals and third place at 11:30 a.m.
Consolation first round is noon Thursday. Consolation semifinals are 8 a.m. Thursday, followed by consolation finals at 11:30 a.m.
Doubles times: The first round is 10 a.m. Thursday, followed by quarterfinals at 2 p.m. Semifinals are 8 a.m. Friday, followed by finals and third place at 11:30 a.m.
Consolation first round is 2 p.m. Thursday. Consolation semifinals are 8 a.m. Thursday, followed by consolation finals at 11:30 a.m.
Lourdes entrants: In singles, Lourdes has sophomore Ben Kopecky. Kopecky finished second at state last year and is ranked No. 1 in Class A. Kopecky has a tough draw in the first round, taking on Blake’s Ford Traff. Kopecky is the Section 1A champion. Traff is ranked fifth in the state.
In doubles, Lourdes has the combination of sophomore Javon Bea and eighth-grader Robert Turlington. Bea played No. 1 doubles most of the season, while Turlington was a No. 3 singles player during the regular season. They play Thief River Falls’ Chase Haviland and Brian Kays in the first round. Bea/Turlington are the Section 1A champions.
Favorites: Kopecky is favored to win the singles title, though Lourdes coach Kevin Rust says there are as many as four players who have a legitimate shot at it. Blake’s Traff is ranked fifth in the state. In the bracket opposite of Kopecky are Breck junior Will Oberrender and St. Paul Academy Pierce Norton. Those two meet in the first round. Oberrender is ranked second in the state and Norton third.
In doubles, Blake’s Phillip Jackley returns to defend his title. He teamed with Merritt Jackley last year. This season he competes with sophomore Jack Bryant. St. Paul Academy’s John Wright, who was third in last year’s state singles tournament, has moved to doubles. Mackely/Bryant are in the same bracket as Bea/Turlington, while Wright and his partner Dillon Titcomb are not.
— Pat Ruff