The Lions sweep all four of the day’s singles matches against the Pacers.
With practices few and far between in the spotty early-season weather, the West Linn boys tennis team adapted.
The Lions — facing Lakeridge at Lakeridge High School in both teams’ 2023 season opener — adapted and did so brilliantly, rolling past the Pacers 7-1 in cool, cloudy conditions on Wednesday, March 15.
West Linn swept all four singles matches and took three of four in doubles to knock off Lakeridge 7-1 and improve to 1-0 in Three Rivers League play. The Pacers, who picked up their lone win at fourth doubles, fell to 0-1 in league play.
“I think everyone else played well, even though a couple of us — including myself — were suffering from minor injuries,” said West Linn senior Jax Ledwith, the reigning TRL singles champion who won in straight sets at first singles. “We still managed a 7-1 match score line against an always-tough Lakeridge team.”
Ledwith got things going at the top of the singles ladder, battling past Lakeridge sophomore Cooper Wyngarden 6-2, 6-2. Ledwith said he wasn’t satisfied with his play, but was glad to help his team win.
“I didn’t play a good match, but I still got the job done,” Ledwith said, adding that the Lions “are looking good for this season.”
The Lions kept the accelerator down in the other three singles matches, too, with junior Grant Hawkins beating Pacer junior Michael Shin 6-2, 6-0 at second singles, West Linn senior Thomas Crawford dropping Lakeridge freshman Micah Leake 6-2, 6-0 at third singles, and WL junior Youssef Abdelsamad ousting LR junior Basim Ibsies 6-2, 6-0 at fourth singles.
While the Lions didn’t sweep the day’s doubles matches, they were still very, very good. At first doubles, West Linn senior Camerson Paulsen and sophomore partner Rhyson Chiang powered past Lakeridge seniors Daniel Kaukonen and Kalevi Kaukonen 6-1 6-1.
At second doubles, Lion sophomore Zach Steinberg and junior Keyan Fernando knocked off Pacer junior Hewett Polliak and senior Ethan Westerdahl 6-0, 6-2. And at third doubles, WL senior Nick Owens and junior Akshay Krishnamoorthy beat LR seniors Drew Morris Keaton Honberger 6-3, 6-3.
The Pacers didn’t go away empty-handed, however, thanks to the efforts of Lakeridge junior Daniel Shin and sophomore partner Jack Livingston at fourth doubles. Shin and Livingston teamed up to dump West Linn seniors Wyatt Brambilla and Ben Garcia 6-3, 6-4.
Next up, the Lions will face Sunset in non-league play at Sunset High School at 4 p.m. Friday, March 17. The Pacers, meanwhile, will host Aloha in non-league action at Lakeridge High School at 4 p.m. Monday, March 20.
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