Although the Red Devils lost their contests as a team, several players performed very well in their matches, coaches said. Tuesday’s match against the Gunnison Bulldogs featured excellent tennis by GCHS junior Elijah Stock, the Red Devils’ No. 1 singles player. Stock won his first set 7-5 after winning three consecutive games and breaking his opponent’s serve twice in a row. He handily won his second set 6-2, earning Grand’s only victory in the contest.
No. 2 singles player Alec Tatton lost his match 6-2, 6-1. Tatton’s loss was mainly due to Gunnison’s steady playing, said Red Devil head coach Ed DeFrancia.
“Gunnison is a really steady team,” DeFrancia said. “Alec had a backboard in his match.”
Sophomore Tommy DeWit played No. 3 singles for Grand in the contest. DeWit lost his first set 6-4 and came back to win the second set 6-1. However, his opponent won the third set 6-3 to claim victory in the match. No. 1 doubles team Mack Sherrill and Josh Lowry and No. 2 doubles team Derek Johnson and Austin Aubrey lost their matches 6-3, 7-5 and 6-3, 6-3, respectively.
The Red Devils also played the Manti Templars on Tuesday afternoon. Stock and DeWit both contributed to Grand’s wins in the contest. Stock won his match 6-2, 7-6, 7-3. DeWit won both his sets 6-3, 6-3.
“Everything was working for [DeWit],” said DeFrancia.
Tatton lost his sets 6-0 and 6-1 against Manti’s former No. 1 singles player. Both doubles teams lost their matches with scores of 6-0 in both sets.
“Manti has excellent doubles teams,” said DeFrancia. “They get everything back and hit everything right.”
Friday’s contest against Wasatch Academy was also tough for the Red Devils as they battled for a win at home. Tatton won his match 6-4, 6-0, using a modified swing to add more topspin to his shots and serving extraordinarily well in the contest, DeFrancia said. Stock lost his match – his first loss of the 2014 season – against Manti’s No. 1 singles player, 6-4, 6-3. The loss gives Stock a 3-1 region record and a 6-2 non-region record (including matches played against 3 and 4A schools).
“It was an amazing match with some incredible shots,” DeFrancia said. “Elijah was grinning the entire time.”
DeWit lost his No. 3 singles match, 6-3, 7-5. Lowry and Sherrill won their first set 6-4 and then lost two consecutive sets, 6-0, 6-3. Johnson was paired with junior Dallin Porter for their No. 2 doubles match. The team won their contest with a tiebreak in the first set and 6-0 final score in the second set.
“You never know what you’re going to get, but Wasatch brought an amazing team,” DeFrancia said.
The Red Devils are scheduled to play their next matches on Tuesday, April 22 against South Sevier in Monroe.