Two very familiar foes will meet in the championship of the Concord boys tennis regional today.
Fairfield and Angola, NECC rivals, will meet for the third time thi season at 5 p.m.
The Falcons bested Elkhart Memorial, 3-2, while Angola dispatched East Noble, 5-0.
Two evenly matched teams will square off for the regional championship, Fairfield coach Mike Filbrun said.
“Looking at the lineup, each match could go either way,” Filbrun said.
In the regular season matchup between the two schools, Fairfield was a 3-2 winner, while Angola won the conference tournament.
The Falcons swept the two doubles matches in straight sets: At No. 1 doubles, Fairfield’s Taylor Yoder and Dillon Lockwood bested Memorial’s Elliot Denton and Trevor Tavallali, while at No. 2 doubles, Fairfield’s Marcus Rodes and Adam Yoder defeated Mamorial’s Stephen Tefft and Jonathan Bailey.
The doubles sweep meant the Falcons needed just one point from the three singles matches.
Fairfield got that crucial point from No. 2 singles player Austin Christner, who dispatched Memorial’s Spenser Gilbert, 6-2, 6-2.
Christner said he wasn’t approaching his match any more lightly knowing that the Falcons needed to win just singles match.
“I just go out there and try to beat my guy,” Christner said.
Christner attributed his victory to an effective first serve.
That part of a player’s game, Christner said, can make all the difference when it’s working.
“When you can get your first serve in, it gives you a lot of confidence,” Christner said.
Now, for Christner and his teammates, it’s on to the finals against a very famikliar opponent.
“It’s a great rivalry for us,” Christner said. “We’ve seen them twice this season.”
In individual sectional act ion on Tuesday, Goshen’s No. 1 doubles team of Sylas Buller and Sam Stegelmann topped Elkhart Central’s Riley Futterknecht and Alex Moon, 6-4, 6-0.
The match was not as easy as the score might indicate, Goshen coach Daniel Love said.
“The guys had to rally from 1-3 down in the first set,” Love said.
Buller and Stegelmann will face Concord’s T. Cunningham and Trevor Warren this afternoon. If Angola wins the regional championship as a team, the winner of that match will be sectional champions. If Angola loses to Fairfield, then the winner of the matchup between the Goshen and Concord No. 1 doubles teams will face Angola’s No. 1 doubles team of Marcus Arnold and Craig Nofziger on Thursday.
Fairfield 3, Elkhart Memorial 2
No. 1 — Mazin Hakim (EM) def. Jordan Hochstedler, 6-3, 6-2.
No. 2 — Austin Christner (FF) def. Spenser Gilbert, 6-2, 6-2.
No. 3 — Chirag Patel (EM) def. Landon Knepp, 6-7 (7), 6-2, 6-3.
No. 1 — Dillon Lockwood-Taylor Yoder (FF) def. Elliot Denton-Trevor Tavallali, 6-1, 6-3.
No. 2 — Adam Yoder-Marcus Rhodes (FF) def. Stephen Tefft-Jonathan Bailey, 6-0, 6-0.
Angola 5, East Noble 0
No. 1 — Jacob Stump (A) def. Matthew Stallman, 6-1, 6-0.
No. 2 — Cameron Hall (A) def. Evan Hart, 6-1, 6-2.
No. 3 — Blake Trusty (A) def. Nathan Manns, 6-2, 1-6, 7-5.
No. 1 — Markus Arnold-Craig Nofziger (A) def. Aaron Dills-Brennan Biggins, 6-1, 6-2.
No. 2 — Matt Brown-Chris Calvelage (A) def. Carl Kramer-Jonathan Toles, 7-6 (5), 6-3.