Doubles push 'Betsy boys past VHS
By Matt Hill

   They didn't do it by chewing Doublemint Gum, but the Elizabethton High School boys tennis team doubled its pleasure late Monday afternoon when it actually needed to.
   The Cyclone boys needed to win two out of three doubles matches, but instead won all of them to clinch a 6-3 victory over the Volunteer Falcons at the EHS Tennis Center.
   The Lady Cyclones were also victorious, winning 8-1 over the Lady Falcons.
   An 8-4 win by the tandem of David Reece and Weston Peters gave the Cyclones a 4-3 match lead. EHS closed it out when Chris Taylor and Josh Davis defeated David Bryant and Tyler Young in a 9-7 thriller.
   Brad Holtsclaw and Devin Johnson provided icing on the cake with their 9-7 triumph over Derek Rhoten and Matt Hall.
   "Our doubles have been pretty strong all year," Elizabethton head coach Danny O'Quinn said. "They've won several matches for us that have come down to our doubles. Josh and Chris have probably got the best doubles record of all the guys that are playing doubles. They do a real good job, and tonight they did their job again and that's what won us this match."
   It was an almost perfect day for Davis, as he had a very convincing 6-0, 6-1 singles win over Young.
   "I did pretty well," Davis said. "They guy I played was not up to par I think today. I feel pretty good today."
   Elizabethton High's No. 1 boys player also had a nice day, as Reece knocked off Chris Ofiero 6-3, 6-1.
   "I just stuck with my game plan," Reece said. "I knew once I figured out how he played, I would be able to pull it out. "
   Reece used some powerful strokes to win nine of the last 10 games in the match.
   "I brought out some power in the second set," Reece said. "I went for my strokes. I figured I had a little to lose."
   The other boys singles win for EHS belonged to Taylor, a 6-1, 7-5 victor over Rhoton.
   Howerton, Hall and Bryant all won for Volunteer.
   The EHS girls continued their winning ways, and Liz Dove was a big reason why.
   Dove played brilliantly in a 6-4, 6-2 win over Summer Howey.
   Dove was coming off a loss to Unicoi County's Stephanie Nuss on Thursday, and this win has helped her get some confidence back.
   "I got down on myself," Dove said. "Now I'm trying to get back to where I was."
   Dove thought she had a different mentality on Monday.
   "I just stayed calm, and I didn't let my little mistakes get to me," Dove said. "I just tried to keep hitting the ball back and stay consistent."
   EHS tennis veteran Hayley Shields showed her experience in a 7-6 (7-3 in tiebreaker) 6-0 win over Jennifer Jones.
   Jones gave Shields fits in the first set, but the senior made sure she wasn't going to be denied.
   "I just kept my concentration, and didn't worry about it," Shields said. "I just tried to keep cool."
   Shields has yet to lose a match in 2002, and she is going to do all she can to keep that winning streak going.
   "I'm trying to keep that up this year," Shields said.
   Allison Parlier stepped to the fore in her match. Parlier easily defeated Valice Cartwright 6-2, 6-0 on Monday.
   "I was pumped up and ready to play," Parlier said.
   Kaci Campbell was also an easy winner for the Lady Cyclones, as she knocked off Vickie Adams 6-0, 6-1.
   Elizabethton's Stephanie Schumaier had to play a little while in her match, but she pulled out a 3-6, 6-3, 6-0 win over Stacy Hurd.
   Morgan Smith recorded Volunteer's only win of the day in singles.
   The Lady Cyclones were victorious in all three doubles matches. Dove teamed up with Amanda Pike in the first doubles contest to win 8-1 over Smith and Howey.
   Shields and Schumaier followed that up with an 8-1 win over Hurd and Jones. Then Abby Bremer and Campbell finished the doubles sweep with an 8-2 triumph over Cartwright and Adams.
   The Lady Cyclones took one step closer to a conference title, which something that puts a smile on Parlier's face.
   "I'm really excited," Parlier said. "We've been having a good year."
   EHS will be back in action Thursday at Johnson County.