Warhorses capture region title in tennis
The Barnwell High and Williston-Elko High boys tennis teams squared off for the first time this season on March 28.
There wasn’t much for the Warhorses to celebrate that day as they fell to the Blue Devils 4-2 in Williston.
On Tuesday, April 4, the teams met again in a rematch. This time, the outcome would be different as the Warhorses got payback with a 5-1 win.
With the win, Barnwell High improves to 7-3 overall. That victory, coupled with the win over Batesburg-Leesville High two days later, gives Barnwell High the Region V championship.
Barnwell High coach Jeff Miller said his young team made some huge strides this season.
“Outstanding job by a great group of young men,” Miller said. “Despite being a young team with no seniors, this team has risen to the challenge and been very competitive in every match.”
Unlike the first meeting, the Warhorses couldn’t ask for a better start this time around.
Warhorse top flight player Sam Ben Solomons got off to a tough start in his match against Austin Smith of the Blue Devils.
Smith cruised over Solomons in the opening set, 6-1. Solomons, however, quickly rebounded to post wins of 6-1 and 10-7 in the following two sets to take the match.
In No. 2 singles, Chris Sullivan of BHS served up a good performance in his straight set 6-4, 6-2 win over Tyran Parker of WEHS.
In the following set, Blake Ryneer of the Blue Devils broke the streak of Warhorse victories with a 6-1, 6-3 win over Jackson Solomons.
That, however, would be the only win in the match for the Blue Devils. Lionel Mason and Animesha Sahu got the team back on the winning track with wins in No. 4 and No. 5 singles.
The Warhorse No.1 doubles team of Collin Sitton and Rithvik Oruganti continues to produce wins on the court. The duo captured their eighth victory of the season with a 6-2, 6-2 triumph over Treyshawn Tolen and Dalton Taylor.
“I believe Collin Sitton and Rithvik Oruganti are starting to understand the doubles game on a higher level and their effort has been greatly appreciated,” Miller said.
“In the Warhorses’ 4-2 win over Batesburg-Leesville High, Chris Sullivan, Lionel Mason and Animesh Sahu recorded wins in singles play.
The team of Collin Sitton and Rithvik Orguganti won in doubles.
“There are several players on this team that really developed this season. One of those players is Lionel Mason. He was worked his way into the top four. Lionel has been successful, winning seven singles matches this season. He’s definitely a player to watch in the coming years,” Miller said.