Briarwood Christian girls team celebrates Class 5A State Championship. (Creativefx photo)

Briarwood Girls, Spanish Fort Boys Take 5A Crowns;

Montgomery Academy Claims Girls, Boys 1A-3A Tennis Titles

      Briarwood Christian's girls and Spanish Fort's boys edged St. Paul's to capture the AHSAA Class 5A state tennis championships Tuesday in Decatur and Montgomery Academy's girls and boys rolled to the 1A-3A titles in Mobile.
      Briarwood Christian outscored St. Paul’s 65-50 in the girls’ competition and Spanish Fort nipped St. Paul’s 58-56 in the boys’ competition Tuesday at Point Mallard State Park’s Almon Tennis Center.
       Montgomery Academy captured four of six singles titles and two of three doubles finals to win the girls’ tournament and the Eagle boys posted three singles and two doubles victories on the way to its title at the Copeland-Cox Tennis Center.
        Briarwood’s Ochsenhirt Captures Singles Title
        Briarwood’s Lady Lions captured the No. 1 singles and doubles titles to seal the title. Sophomore Ashley Ochsenhirt won the singles crown with a 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 win over Sydney McKinney of Muscle Shoals. Jud Tarence won at No. 2 singles and then combined with Ochesenhirt to beat Cullman’s Hannah Cornelius and McKenzie Bussman 6-4, 6-4 in the No. 1 doubles finals.
        The Lady Lions of Coach Chris Laatsch won the school’s first state tennis title since 2001 with no seniors on its squad. St. Paul’s, the 2012 champs, has dominated the competition with nine 5A state crowns and  four 4A titles since 1997 – 13 championships in the last 16 years. Cullman was third with 43 points and Walker was fourth with 28. Benjamin Russell was named the Sportsmanship Trophy recipient.
        In the other singles finals, St. Paul’s Seline Morrissette and Monnie Slaton won at No. 3 and No. 4, respectively. Walker’s Lexi Dillard and Sarah Katherine Warren took the No. 5 and No. 6 titles. Cullman’s duo of Olivia Sharpton and Bailey Baker won at No. 2 doubles and Arab’s Alexis Daniels and Kacey Narrell captured the No. 3 doubles crown.
        Spanish Fort Boys Snare First State Tennis Title
The Toros of Coach Michael Beasley won the school’s first boys’ state tennis title as senior Dallas Teague won the Class 5A singles title at No. 1. He beat Lee Thompson of Boaz 6-1, 6-0 in the finals, giving Spanish Fort the No. 1 singles crown for the fifth straight year.
        Teague teamed with Barry Booth to take the No. 1 doubles championship as the Toros edged St. Paul’s by two points. Russellville finished third with 38 points and Walker fourth with 30. Briarwood Christian was the Sportsmanship Award winner.
        Teague and Booth beat St. Paul’s Turner Sankey and Turner Myers 7-5, 6-2 in the finals. Booth also won No. 2 singles and Josh Berglund won at No. 3 for the Toros. Drew Malone of Russellville won at No. 4 singles, St. Paul’s Sam Franklin at No. 5 and Cullman’s Matthew Davis at No. 6.
        Walker’s Colby Hopper and Michael Wiginton won at No. 2 doubles and St. Paul’s Benton Weinacker and William Russell won No. 3 doubles.
        MA Girls Score 72 Points
        Montgomery Academy, coached by Denise Tinney, won the state title with 72 points and Houston Academy was second with 48. Deshler finished third with 37 followed by American Christian 26, Madison Academy 24 and Donoho 21.
        Madison Academy senior Sydney Homan beat Houston Academy’s Natalie Voss 6-0, 6-1 to claim the No. 1 singles crown. Nicola Voss won at No. 2 singles over Montgomery Academy’s Mary Elizabeth Massey in a marathon final, 6-7, 6-4, 6-3.
        Montgomery Academy won the final four singles titles as sophomore Gretchen Lee captured the No. 3 singles crown, senior Lee Ellen Bryan won at No. 4, sophomore Hannah Snider at No. 5 and freshman Holland Griffin at No. 6.
        Seniors Hollan Smith and Mary Elizabeth Massey won the No. 1 doubles championship for the Lady Eagles over Houston Academy’s Natalie and Nicola Voss, 6-7, 2-6, 6-3. Griffin and Snider were the No. 3 doubles winners. Donoho’s Alex Wood and Adele Fink won the No. 2 doubles title.
        Trinity Presbyterian received the Sportsmanship Award.
        MA Boys Total 67 points
Montgomery Academy outscored runner-up and arch-rival Trinity Presbyterian 67-51 as the two Montgomery schools finished 1-2 in the boys’ state tournament, also played at the Copeland-Cox Tennis Center.
        Coach David Bethea’s Eagles used a strong doubles finish to capture the title. Sophomore Will Spain and junior Guy Hood won No. 2 doubles for Montgomery Academy while junior Bonner McLemore and freshman Allen Millsap were No. 3 doubles champions.
        Freshman Bo Torbert won at No. 3 singles, McLemore at No. 4 and Millsap at No. 5.
        Bayside Academy eighth grader Trent Kennegieter beat MA sophomore Hunter Carroll 6-4, 6-3 to win the No. 1 singles title. He also teamed with senior Colin Wilkins to beat Carroll and Torbert in the No. 1 doubles finals 6-3, 6-3.
        Trinity’s Brennan Colley and Charlie Trotman won the No. 2 and No. 6 singles titles, respectively.
        Bayside finished third with 46 points and Decatur Heritage was fourth with 25. Fayette County was named the Sportsmanship winner.


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