KINGSTON — An early deficit across the five courts at Kirby Park made it appear Scranton Prep would make quick work of top seed Wyoming Seminary in the District 2 Class 2A Boys Tennis Team Tournament finals.
But the Blue Knights showed a tenacity befitting a champion, extending the Cavaliers through two hours of play before Scranton Prep finally wrapped up its fourth title in seven years, 3-1 on Tuesday.
Looking across the three singles matches and two doubles matches early, Scranton Prep (15-1) claimed nine of the first 11 games played. But as the Blue Knights (13-1) warmed to their tasks, they started chipping away at the margin.
“They fought back great,” Wyoming Seminary coach Allison Joanlanne said. “I am very proud of them. We have a lot of freshmen on the team. Hopefully this will be something they will build from.”
The most successful Knight was freshman Andrew Schukrapf at No. 3 singles. He gave up a couple of breaks while dropping the first set 3-6. But Schukrapf took over his match against Tony Kutz, who played doubles for Prep last year.
The Sem freshman broke Kutz’s serve in the sixth game of the second set en route to a 6-3 win, then picked up four breaks in the deciding third set, which Schukrapf also won 6-3.
“Andrew has been that kind of player all year for us,” Joanlanne said. “He will hang in there no matter what kind of ball comes to him. He’s been winning his matches like that.”
Matt Cartwright saw his match with Pete Kazmierczak halted once Prep had reached the three-victory mark at 5-7, 7-6 (5), 0-1. Cartwright had battled through a tough first set, changing speeds and using precise placement to gain a lead, only to see the big hitter Kazmierczak win the final four games to take the opener.
“They will see them again at districts (singles),” Joanlanne said of Cartwright and Chris Kim, who lost No. 1 singles 6-1, 6-1 to Keller McGurrin. “Hopefully they can learn from this, though there’s not a lot of time to do so.”
McGurrin enters Thursday’s district singles tournament as the top seed and Kim is No. 2.
Doubles play also was extremely close on this breezy day. The No. 1 doubles team of Eamon Gibbons and Adrian Sung for Sem were just a few points from victory in a 6-4, 7-6 (5) loss, while the Knights’ Matt Obeid and Richard Hughes lost second doubles 7-6 (7), 6-4.
In earlier action, Sem reached the district final by downing Valley View 3-0. Berwick lost in the semifinals to Prep 3-0. For Wyoming Seminary and Scranton Prep, this marked their sixth consecutive meeting in the district final and each school now has three wins during that stretch. The Blue Knights won three straight titles from 2010-12.
In Class 3A, Hazleton Area (10-2) dropped its semifinal to Delaware Valley 3-0. Abington Heights downed Del Val 3-1 in the district 3A final.
DISTRICT 2 TEAM TOURNAMENT
Class 2A final
Scranton Prep 3, Wyoming Seminary 1
Singles — Keller McGurrin (SP) d. Chris Kim 6-1, 6-1; Pete Kazmierczak (SP) led Matt Cartwright 7-5, 6-7 (5), 1-0; Andrew Schukrapf (WS) d. Tony Kutz 3-6, 6-3, 6-3.
Doubles — Darquin McGurrin/John-Carlin Cognetti (SP) d. Eamon Gibbons/Adrian Sung 6-4, 7-6 (5); Jimmy Thessler/Chris McGrath (SP) d. Matt Obeid/Richard Hughes 7-6 (7), 6-4.
Wyoming Seminary 3, Valley View 0
Singles — Chris Kim (WS) led Joey Ferretti 6-4, 1-1; Matt Cartwright (WS) led PJ Sova 6-0, 2-4; Andrew Schukrapf (WS) d. Alex Rodway 6-1, 6-1.
Doubles — Eamon Gibbons/Adrian Sung (WS) d. Erik Miller/Dylan Rudalavage 6-3, 6-1; Matt Obeid/Richard Hughes (WS) d. Nate Santarelli/Alec Sebastianelli 6-1, 6-0.
Scranton Prep 3, Berwick 0
Singles — Keller McGurrin (SP) d. Luke Whitenight 6-1, 6-2; Pete Kazmierczak (SP) d. Blake Whitmire 6-0, 6-0; Tony Kutz (SP) led Dominic Scicchitano 6-3, 3-0.
Doubles — Darquin McGurrin/John-Carlin Cognetti (SP) d. Nick Oliver/Giuseppe Baratta 6-1, 6-1; Jimmy Thessler/Chris McGrath (SP) led Cole Gordner/Mike Dyer 6-4, 4-1.
Class 3A semifinal
Delaware Valley 3, Hazleton Area 0
Singles — Andrew Neidig (DV) d. Wister Yuhas 6-2, 6-1; Carl Pallini (DV) led Donald Tedesco 6-1, 6-5; Mauro Notaro (H) led Devin Paulison 7-6 (2), 4-2.
Doubles — Tyler Casey/Matt Falkenburg (DV) d. Austin Yevak/Adam Grula 6-3, 6-2; Andrew Seepes/Alex Smashnov (DV) d. Russ Gawel/Nico Makuta 6-1, 6-0.