With the 11th Region Tennis Tournament girls' team title settled before Thursday's finals, the drama of the day fell to the boys' doubles.
Henry Clay, with an 11-10 lead over Lexington Catholic in the team race, had Dean Tsamas and Andrew Herring going against Catholic's Ryne Least and Zach Lewis.
A year ago, Catholic's duo finished second at the State Tournament, topping Henry Clay in the quarterfinals.
That was then, though, and this is now: Tsamas and Herring turned the tables on Least and Lewis with a 6-4, 7-5 victory that began on the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex outdoor courts and, because of light rain, finished in the adjacent indoor facility.
"It was really hard fought," said Herring, a sophomore. "That was probably one of the best matches (we've) ever played, so it was nice to get that. And it's nice to get my team in the State Tournament."
Added Tsamas, a junior: "We played a lot more aggressive (than last year), definitely. We got to the net a lot more. ... A lot smarter game."
The championship teams — Henry Clay's boys and LCA's girls — advance both doubles teams and both singles singles players that competed in the regional to State. So do the top two singles and top two doubles finishers from teams other than the Henry Clay boys and LCA girls.
Lexington Catholic's Samantha Maddox blitzed Dunbar's Kathryn Hays 6-0, 6-0 for girls' singles honors. An all-LCA doubles finals saw McKinley Mason and Lyndsay Pickett whip Laura Hayes and Shelby Eden 6-1, 6-1.
Tates Creek's Grant Roberts beat Dunbar's Chaz Shelton 6-0, 6-0 in boys' singles.
Roberts, state runner-up last year, will be playing at the same facility next year for the Kentucky Wildcats.
He's looking forward to taking a shot at last year's state champion, Covington Catholic's Jimmy Roebker.
"I want my rematch," Roberts said. "I was so close, so it should be fun this year."
Brenda Emery, coach of the LCA girls, said her team "did really well. A lot of them had not been here before in this situation."
Catholic's Maddox completed a run of the regional table, not losing a game.
"I've been training really hard and just working toward State, just playing as hard as I can all the time," said Maddox, who placed second to North Oldham's Lauren Kline in the 2009 State Tournament. "I'm definitely looking for a win over at State this year."
Teams — Henry Clay 12; Lexington Catholic 10; Tates Creek 7; Lexington Christian 6; (tie) Paul L. Dunbar and Sayre 5; (tie) Lafayette, Model and West Jessamine 4; Woodford Co. 3; Scott Co. 2.
Singles finals — Grant Roberts (TC) d. Chaz Shelton (PLD) 6-0, 6-0.
Doubles finals — Dean Tsamas/Andrew Herring (HC) d. Ryne Least/Zach Lewis (LxCath) 6-4, 7-5. Third place — Scott Layton/Zach Miekle (WJ) d. Nathan Gillespie/Taylor Harris (Laf) 6-0, 7-5.
All-region — Roberts (TC); Shelton (PLD); Tsamas, Herring and Brad Merchant (HC); Austin Akers, Least and Lewis (LxCath); Woody Rini (Model); Gabriel Ambruso (Sayre). Coach of the Year: Josh Yost (WJ).
Teams — Lexington Christian 12; Lexington Catholic 11; Model 9; Dunbar 6; (tie) Sayre and Henry Clay 5; (tie) Tates Creek and Lafayette 3; (tie) Scott Co., West Jessamine, Woodford Co., and East Jessamine 2.
Singles finals — Samantha Maddox (LxCath) d. Kathryn Hays (PLD) 6-0, 6-0.
Doubles finals — McKinley Mason/Lyndsay Pickett (LCA) d. Laura Hayes/Shelby Eden (LCA) 6-1, 6-1.
All-Region — Maddox (LxCath); Eden, Pickett, Mason, Hayes, Abby Dorton and Hope Frazier (LCA); Hays (PLD); Claire Mielcarek (HC); Constance Cosialls (Model). Coach of the Year: Brenda Emery (LCA).
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