• GHS Boys Tennis Rolls in First Round of Regionals

    By Larry Savage

    Gainesville Sun Staff Writer


    Published April 12th, 2011

    In business-like fashion, the Gainesville High boys tennis team dominated St. Augustine in the first round of the Region 2-3A playoffs.

    The Hurricanes posted a 7-0 shutout on Tuesday at the Jonesville Tennis Center, paving the way to a possible fourth meeting with rival Eastside in Thursday’s Class 3A, Region 2 second round. This is the third time in the last four years they have advanced to the second round of 3A tournament.

    The No. 1 doubles team of Zach Goldberg and Cole Fiegel set the tone early for Gaineville, beating the Yellow Jackets’ No. 1 team of Sam Gibson and Sean Williams, 6-1, 6-0. The Hurricanes’ No. 2 doubles team of Peter Slaton and Justin Zambelli fared just as well, beating Tyler McLemore and Kurtis Griffey, 6-1, 6-1.

    By the time Goldberg and Fiegel, both sophomores, convincingly won their No. 1 and No. 2 singles matches, GHS had clinched the match.

    “I thought we came out and played very well,” said Hurricanes coach Paul Spradling. “This team we played were runners-up in their district, and I was concerned that we may play down to their level. But the guys took control early in their matches. I look forward to our match on Thursday.”

    In No. 1 singles, Goldberg (18-2) blanked Gibson, 6-0, 6-0. Fiegel (18-2), The Sun’s 2010 player of the year, dominated Williams in No. 2 singles, 6-1, 6-3.

    “I thought we came out and played very well,” Goldberg said. “It doesn’t really matter if we are on the road Thursday or back here. But I think we will be facing Eastside.”

    Eastside’s boys match against Wolfson in Jacksonville was postponed because of rain. It will be played today. If the Rams advance, they will face Gainesville on Thursday at Jonesville Tennis Center. If Wolfson wins, the ’Canes will travel to Jacksonville on Thursday.

    Thursday’s winner will advance to the state tournament April 18-20 in Altamonte Springs.

    “We should play Eastside Thursday,” Fiegel said. “It would be the fourth time we played them. We have won all three previous meetings, but they have all been good matches.

    “We feel pretty good about our chances of reaching state.”

    GHS freshman Peter Slaton, senior Jesse Gordon and junior Justin Zambelli cruised to straight-set victories in No. 3, No. 4, and No. 5 singles, respectively, to complete the shutout over St. Augustine.

    “It is hard enough beating a rival three times in one season, we would be asked to beat them four times,” Spradling said, about a possible rematch with Eastside. “Jonesville is their home court, and our guys want to play them here. I’m more worried about Thursday’s match than thinking about state right now.”

    For Goldberg, who played for Eastside last year, he is looking forward to a possible rematch with the Rams.

    “We’ve played them three times already, and the first time was kind of weird since I played with them last year,” Goldberg said. “But I am used to playing with GHS now. We just have to continue to play well Thursday to get to state.”

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