The Boonville Pirates tennis team set the tone early Monday against Osage by recording wins in all three doubles matches for a 6-3 victory.
Although Boonville and Osage would split the singles matches with three wins each, head coach Stephanie Green said it was still a good way to start the season with a win over the other conference team with a tennis program.
“We needed to actually be able to be outside and play and with more days like today and some hard work in practice, we are on track to peak well this season,” Green said. “Doubles started strong, but we had some mid-match let down and had to really adjust to our own games. Chrisman/Gentry were up 7-0 and just had some frustration with communication and consistency, but were able to finish strong finally. Rehagen/Pefferman played a tight match but fortunately their experience together helped them come on strong and confident in the last couple of games to close it. For the first time playing together ever, Pannell/Kaiser really grew in individual and team strategy on the court together and by the end of those 13 games were much more confident and understanding of movement and doubles strategy.”
Boonville opened doubles play with the team of Josh Chrisman and Quin Gentry winning 8-5 over Logan Havner and Drew Elley. Meanwhile, at No. 2 doubles, the team of Will Rehagen and Andrew Pefferman defeated the team of Ethan Kucsik and Ryan Page 8-6. The No. 3 doubles team of Dalton Pannell and Tucker Kaiser also prevailed over the team of Braden Vickers and Colin Smithson 8-5.
As for the singles matches, Osage took the first two matches with Havner beating Chrisman 8-2 and Elley topping Gentry 8-4.
Boonville won the next three matches to seal the team victory, with Rehagen winning 8-4 over Kucsik at the No. 3 spot, Pefferman over Kucsik 8-2 at the No. 4 slot and Pannell over Vickers 8-2 at the No. 5 position. Meanwhile, at No. 6 singles, Colin Smithson won 8-4 over Kaiser.
Green said Chrisman struggled from the onset with an opponent who consistently favored the left side of the court and had a big forehand.
“When Josh made adjustments to move him forward and back, he was able to get him out of position and win points,” Green said. “Gentry had much the same struggle, but really fought back hard. We will work on intensity and shot selection in the coming days to give them more tools. Rehagen had a little mid match lull as well when things weren't falling his way, but once he relaxed and assumed control of the court, he really came on strong.
“Pefferman and Pannell played much more strategically and with confidence and made adjustments to their court positioning after coming out of three seasons of doubles play. Kaiser's first match being thrown into a varsity singles spot was a little unnerving for him, but his growth in those 12 games was astronomical. He really worked to develop his serve and was a different player from beginning to the end.”
In JV action, Boonville won all three matches in doubles with the team of Gabe Greis and Gabe Brimer prevailing 8-1 over Atkisson and Boyd. The No. 2 team of Austin Coleman and Zane Watring also won 8-2 over Atkisson and Boyd. Meanwhile, at No. 3 JV doubles, the team of Emanuel Bartolomeo and Chase Murray defeated the team of Hayden Alley and Dominick Price 8-1.