Cyclones take courts, handily beat JCHS

By Rebecca Pierson
STAR Correspondent

   The wind was blowing good and hard Thursday, but not enough to keep the Cyclone tennis teams for handing down shutout victories against Johnson County for the boys' and girls' teams.
   "I think that everybody played well today -- singles and doubles," Elizabethton head coach Danny O'Quinn said. "We were able to go 9-0, 9-0 in both the boys and the girls, and I am very proud of them. I think they all played good from No. 1 all the way through No. 6, and even through my No. 3 doubles. I was very happy with all of them."
   In the boys' singles, No. 1 seed Curtis Brumit served up an 8-1 victory over James Cox.
   "As of right now I am undefeated, so it is going like I wanted it to," Brumit said. "The team has done real well this year. We had one slip up on our first match, but I think it was just nerves. Since then, we have done fine."
   Seth Wallingford defeated Chris Eller, 8-5. Jordan Peters won over Justin Genaille, 8-6. Jamis Gouge won over Jared Angel 8-4, as did Tim Franklin over Judd Shoun. Jared Tetrick won 8-5 over Nick McCloud.
   In boys' doubles action, Brumit and Wallingford defeated Cox and Genaille 8-4, as did Peters and Cody Richardson over John Lawler and Chad Parlier for the third seed match. Gouge and Franklin won over Dakotah Campbell and Justin Madgzuik.
   "There is a little more pressure this year because I am No. 1 on the team, so I have to play a lot harder competition," Brumit said. "We are doing well in doubles, but we still have to get used to each other a little bit. This is our first year playing together, but I think we will do well this year."
   Elizabethton girls' No. 1 seed Amanda Pike defeated Mandy Howard 8-0.
   "I think we are coming together great," Pike said. "I think the girls' team has a good chance of being the No. 1 in the conference this year, as long as we can beat Unicoi. That is our toughest competition right now. We haven't played them yet but I think we will do pretty well.
   "I plan on playing in the tournament singles, so hopefully, like I did last year in doubles, I can go to state," she said. "That's what I plan on. I just have to see how well I do in the conference this year."
   In other girls singles' action, Ashley Street won over Katie Sluder 8-2; Allison Parlier over Lindsay Gilbert 8-2; Erin Rogers over Rebecca Sannes 8-1; Kristina Elliott over Kerissa Cazire 8-0; and Lourean Hughes over Trisha Vance 8-1.
   In doubles, all three pairs won in an 8-0 victory -- Pike and Rikki Baughman over Howard and Sluder; Street and Elliott over Courtney Motsinger and Megan Hayworth; and Abby Culler and Kala Culler over Elise Burszttn and Brittany Brewer.
   Pike also said that her families' tennis legacy is the main thing that drives her to be the best player that she can be. She said there may be a little bit of pressure to compete at such a level, but not a lot.
   "My Dad has helped me a lot," she said. "He goes and he hits with me. I see all the great things they have done, so I just want to try and live up to their expectations and everything."
   Both the girls and the boys appear to be coming together as teammates as they get ready next week to face Tennessee High on Monday for a non-conference match, and then face their biggest conference rival, Unicoi County, on Tuesday.
   "Our first match you could tell we weren't clicking together real well," O'Quinn said about how his team is coming together. "With the weather we have had the last couple of weeks, we are working a lot better and clicking pretty well.
   "I am happy with the progress we've made the past couple of weeks. The only way you get good at tennis is play, play, play. Even though we've won the past couple of matches pretty easily, just getting out onto the court is helping out just being out there. I don't know exactly what [Unicoi] has got. I don't know anything about them, but hopefully we will be ready for them, and we will see what they have on Tuesday."