published Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

Ooltewah Owls, Lady Trojans wrap up 5-AAA tennis titles

ATHENS, Tenn. — Despite his boys' team's undefeated run through the District 5-AAA regular season and solid positioning after the first day of the individual district tournament, Ooltewah tennis coach Ken Buchanan refused to let the Owls feel as though they've won anything.

Now it's official.

The Owls validated their regular-season title by claiming the tournament championship Tuesday at Ingleside Park, with Soddy-Daisy doing the same on the girls' side. Ooltewah's Bryson Lype won the boys' singles title, while Alex Schafer and Aubrey Casey won the girls' doubles bracket for the Lady Trojans.

Cleveland's Jake Gibson and Shivang Patel were the boys' doubles winners, while Ooltewah's Holly Humberger won the girls' singles title. Champions and runners-up advance to the Region 3-AAA tournament, which starts Monday.

"We did what we needed to do," Buchanan said. "I can finally breathe a sigh of relief, because we didn't celebrate until it was over. It was hard to keep the guys in the right mindset and prove they were worthy of being district champs, but we're there now."

Ooltewah finished with 10 total points.

Schafer and Casey were the No. 4 doubles seeds heading into the tournament but beat the Nos. 1 and 3 seeds in taking the title. The Lady Trojans finished with nine points, as Abigail Ellis was second in singles after defeating the top seed in three sets.

"I think they were really motivated," Soddy-Daisy coach Lorri Johnson said of her doubles team. "Abigail just ran out of steam after playing a three-hour match in the semifinals.

"Overall, the girls played very well."

Action in the District 5-A/AA, 6-A/AA and 7-A/AA tournaments began Tuesday. Play in 5-A/AA will resume at Lee University in Cleveland at 9 this morning; 6-A/AA will be at Warner Park and 7-A/AA at Middle Valley.

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