Granite Bay, Oakmont players earn berths in Division II section tennis tournament

By: Bill Poindexter/Roseville Press Tribune Sports Editor
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Matt Thompson of Granite Bay High School and Kyle Coates of Oakmont will play in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II tennis tournament next week.

Thompson, unseeded in the A flight of the Sierra Foothill League tournament at Nevada Union, is scheduled to play Brett Bacharach of Del Oro in the singles final today. Thompson beat two opponents, including third-seeded Tyler Clark of Rocklin, before defeating Austin Wood of Del Oro 2-6, 4-2, default to advance to the championship match.

Granite Bay coach Rory Wood said Thompson “started a little slow” against a slow-hitting foe. Thompson also learned the ball stays in flight a little longer in the Grass Valley air.

“Matt was having difficulty with it in his first match,” Wood said.

Thompson’s second match was Clark’s first of the day. Thompson won 7-6, 6-0.

“He definitely loosened up in the second match,” Wood said of Thompson. “That looseness and continuity continued against Austin Wood.”

In other matches, Blake Hunter of Granite Bay defeated Seth Ahlquist of Del Oro 6-0, 7-5 for the Flight B championship, and Wade Graves of Granite Bay lost to Del Oro’s Brandt Steinmetz by default for third place. Hunter followed a bye with two victories to advance to the final.

Coates lost to top-seeded Matt Alves of Casa Roble 6-2, 6-2 on Wednesday for the Capital Valley Conference singles championship at Gold River Racquet Club.

Coates has had a role in a production of “Annie,” so he played tennis part time this spring, according to Oakmont coach Kevin Chorjel. Alves is one of the top players in the section.

“Kyle played well, but Matt’s just a really, really good tennis player,” Chorjel said.
In super doubles, the Oakmont teams of Zach Paiva and Taylor Phan, and Kevin Salatti and Miguel Yanez made it to the semifinals.

Also, Oakmont’s Ian Utz and Austin Somers won the No. 3 doubles bracket, and in No. 2 doubles, Sri Mandava and Varun Ved of Oakmont made it to the semifinals.

The Vikings played without Coates and other injured players throughout the season, but Chorjel saw a different team on the courts for the CVC tournament.

“We had a really, really tough season. We finished fifth (in the CVC) when we should have finished second,” he said. “One thing I really like about (Wednesday), we had guys playing in their positions, and we played really well. I just saw that improvement. I was proud to see them do that.”