In one of their final tuneups before the sectional, the Washington boys tennis team dispatched Vincennes Lincoln for their third straight victory on Senior Night at Lena Dunn Elementary School.
The Hatchets (7-2) surrendered only three points on their way to a 5-0 sweep against the Alices Thursday afternoon in the Big Eight Conference match.
Vincennes Lincoln brought three singles players and one doubles team, forfeiting the second doubles match.
The Hatchets singles players, Lucas Miller, Cory Thompson and senior Garrett Burton breezed through competition in straight sets without allowing a point.
In a complete team effort, Johnston was impressed with Cory Thompson at two singles, who he said sometimes struggles with focus. Johnston said Thompson was the strongest player for Washington in terms of finishing off points.
“Cory Thompson at two singles, sometimes he can lapse a little bit and lose focus,” Johnston said. “I thought he was the strong one finishing on points on his own racket.”
Johnston acknowledged that while his team had more ability, they still had to show up and play.
“As far as the singles, they came out quickly and took care of business,” Johnston said. “They ended points quickly, which is something you have to do against teams that are a little bit lower.”
In his ninth season as coach of the Hatchets, each Senior Night is difficult for him, but he will miss the leadership of this year’s senior class of Garrett Burton, Matthew Pancake and Nick Fisher.
“This senior class, in particular, have been really good leaders,” Johnston said. “We have a big freshman class, they have taken that role of showing the freshman how things need to be done and how to act on the court. The upperclassmen set the tone.”
While his one doubles team comprised of Pancake and Eli Williams won, but Johnston still sees room for improvement before the sectional.
“One doubles took a while to get going,” Johnston said. “They weren’t communicating really well, so they still have some issues to work on.”
During their recent three-game winning streak, Washington has played teams that they overwhelmed with ability, but Johnston said they have picked up an extra game today against Evansville Day School as a change of pace of who they have been facing.
“We’ll have a little bit more competitive match,” Johnston said. “We are hoping all of this pays off with confidence and we can go and meet a school that we are more equal with.”
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