Youngsters in finals of Kingsport Open

By Matt Hill

   KINGSPORT-- Youth has been served at the Kingsport Open tennis tournament.
   Local teenage stars Matt Stanley and Kyle Allen will play in the finals of the Men's Open Singles tonight at Borden Park, as both players disposed of older opponents on Wednesday.
   Stanley knocked off LaMarr Talley 6-1, 6-3, while Allen won by the same score over Emmett Dougherty.
   Stanley, Dobyns-Bennett's No. 1 player, played brilliantly in his match against Talley.
   Stanley overpowered Talley, and did everything right in the match.
   Stanley thought he played some good tennis.
   "I played fairly well today, and he didn't play as well as I had seen him play before," Stanley said.
   The match with Allen, a standout at Abingdon (Va.) High School, should be a good one. The matches they play against one another are usually very close, and Thursday's looks to be no different.
   "It will definitely be tough," Stanley said. "We've played many times in the past, and every time it's been close. There hasn't been one blowout or anything. I'm just looking to return well. If I return well, I think I should do pretty well.
   Stanley likes how he's playing heading into this big match.
   "I'm pretty much playing the best that I have," Stanley said.
   Stanley will be a sophomore this year, and is hoping to get better over the summer.
   Stanley was thrown into the fire this season, as he had to play a lot of top players as a freshman. He thinks that will only makes him better.
   "I had to play a lot of people that were a lot better than me from other schools," Stanley said. "And I learned a lot from seeing them play. I just have to keep on practicing, and I might be able to get up there."
   Stanley is the son of Margie Stanley, who played at North Carolina. She just might be the best women's tennis player to come out of this area.
   Stanley knows his mom has been a big help to him.
   "My mom has been really good to me," Stanley said. "She's helped me all the way through. She's helped me with everything. She's given me a lot of knowledge on the game."
   Stanley's immediate goal is to win tonight's match, but he has other goals for the future.
   "I'm going to try and play some college tennis," Stanley said. "Maybe even get a scholarship somewhere."
   Allen also looks to have a bright future, and is starting to make waves on the local tennis himself.
   On Wednesday, Allen was pleased with how he played except for the second set.
   "I kind of lost concentration there in the second set," Allen said. "I had that four day break, but now I've played a lot in the last two days."
   Allen is looking forward to the challenge of facing Stanley.
   "I've played him ten times maybe," Allen said. "It will be fun."
   Allen thinks it will be a tough battle, and probably another close match.
   "I'm expecting it to be close," Allen said
   Allen played very well in his match against Dougherty, but he is ready to raise his game to another level.
   Allen knows he will have to do that to have a shot of beating Stanley.
   "Oh yeah," Allen said when asked if he had to play better than he did Wednesday. "Mr. consistency over there."