Login NowClose 
Sign In to h-ponline.com           
Forgot Password
or if you have not registered since 8/22/18
Click Here to Create an Account
Close

Huntington North boys tennis wins Sectional

CHAMPIONS: The Huntington North boys tennis team celebrates after winning the Norwell Sectional championship on Saturday.

by Eric Andrews - eandrews@h-ponline.com

BOYS TENNIS

The Huntington North boys tennis team cracked a 12-year Sectional championship drought on Saturday at the Norwell Sectional, defeating Norwell 4–1.

The Vikings punched their ticket to the championship match by topping Bluffton 4–1 on Friday.

Carson Kitchen (first singles), Jacob Daugherty (third singles), Thomas Schweller and Noah Zahn (first doubles) and Reid Eckert and Matthew Weill (second doubles) all picked up wins in their respective matches for Huntington North.

“The guys came out focused and played a very solid match,” said head coach Peter Kitchen. “Great team effort in all positions. Closed out the second sets at each position we won to make for a nice win.”

The Vikings then took on the hosts, Norwell, on Saturday for the Sectional crown and cruised to a 4–1 win for Huntington North’s first Sectional championship in over a decade.

Much like the Bluffton matchup, the same group of Vikings earned wins in their matchups to lift Huntington North to the overall 4–1 victory.

Carson Kitchen earned a 6–2 win in the first set of his first singles match and escaped a late push in the second set from Norwell’s Jack Gerber.

“Carson played a very steady match against a senior possibly playing his last match,” Peter Kitchen said. “After getting up 6–2, 5–2, Gerber gave one last comeback to get to 5–4. Carson stuck to the game plan and came through after a back and forth game to finish 6–4.”

Peter Kitchen noted how Jacob Daugherty gained confidence early in his duel, which helped him prevail.

“Jacob had a game plan and came out and followed it perfectly and won the first set 6–3,” Peter Kitchen said. “This was huge, as he had lost to Kaden (Bussel) two weeks ago pretty easily. Jacob then dropped the second set to another senior possibly playing their last match. Jacob played incredible to get up 4–0 in the third set. He then held on to win 6–3.”

The doubles action was a bit different, though, as both Huntington North duos went the distance in hard-fought battles.

“No. 1 doubles came out a little slow and dropped a quick 6–1 set,” Peter Kitchen said. “(I) talked to them after the first set and they worked on finishing the point and being more consistent. The boys struggled through the second set and were able to win 6–3. Following the same game plan, they finished off the third set to put us up 2–1 in the team score with No. 2 doubles and No. 3 singles both in the third set. … No. 2 doubles played a great first set and won 6–1. The Norwell team came out quickly in the second set and got up 5–1. Matthew and Reid began their comeback and got back to 5–4 before dropping the set 6–4, setting up another third set. They started out by getting up 5–3 in the third set before being forced back into a third-set tiebreaker. The boys played solid in the tiebreaker to win 7–4. This was the deciding point and gave us the team victory.”

The Vikings will move on to the Regional level of the postseason, where they will head to Carroll to face Homestead on Tuesday.

VOLLEYBALL

The Huntington North volleyball team hit the court on Saturday to compete in the Southwood Invite and came away as the tournament champions after topping Northrop in the championship match.

Morgan Robrock proved to be the best player in Huntington North’s pool, earning the Most Valuable Player recognition in the Lady Vikes’ group.

Huntington North earned wins over Goshen and Marion in pool play to draw Northrop in the title game. The Lady Vikes fell 23–25 in set one, but answered back with a 25–15 win in the second set to force a third and deciding set for the championship. Huntington North completed the title comeback with a 15–10 decision to take the tournament crown.

“The energy was high as our kids played with a never-quit attitude and a new confidence,” said head coach Trinda Goings. “The first set slipped away from us on some crucial defensive errors, but we rallied back in the second set, playing a very complete game serving tough, blocking strong and terminating the ball with high efficiency. Up 13–9, we never allowed Northrop to string more than two points together at a time. Taylor Reust, Morgan Richison and Alexa Spahr led us in serving runs behind the offensive punch by Maddie Levy and a tandem of Robrock sisters, Morgan and Maisy, tallying four and three kills, respectively. Taking the set 25–15, we went into the deciding set motivated and focused to approach the set one play and point at a time. Northrop took a 2–0 lead, but we responded with six straight points behind the serve of Morgan Robrock. We found ourselves up 9–4, but Northrop was not ready to quit, as they battled back to get within one 9–8. A couple of quick points for us and we are up 11–8. Northrop responded and were within one again 11–10. A sideout by us and three more straight points gave us a 15–10 win.”

Goings was pleased with her squad’s performance throughout the tournament and feels the team can build off the experience moving forward.

“Overall, our offense was much more efficient and in sync creating better scoring opportunities,” Goings said. “We served tough and also were able to limit the opponents scoring runs most of the day to two points at a time. Our scoring runs were often four points or more. We were able to adjust and make changes and played with great energy and confidence.”

Huntington North will return to the court Tuesday, hosting Bellmont in a Northeast 8 Conference battle. Varsity will follow junior varsity, which begins at 6 p.m.

CROSS COUNTRY

The Huntington North cross country teams were in action on Saturday at the Northeast 8 Conference Meet. The girls team finished in fourth place, while the boys placed fifth.

Addy Wiley topped all runners of the girls side, taking home the conference crown with a winning time of 18:31.9, over 30 seconds ahead of second place. Wiley’s title earned her a spot on the All-Conference First Team.

Joining Wiley on the All-Conference list were Hanna Whitney and Meg McDonald, who both landed on the All-Conference Honorable Mention list by finishing 17th and 18th overall with times of 21:06.4 and 21:06.5, respectively. McDonald’s time was a new personal-best time by 50 seconds.

Anna Guerre (23rd place, 21:39.4), Naomi Richison (49th place, 25:02.3) and Lesley Zook (50th place, 25:17.6) rounded out Huntington North’s top-55 runners.

On the boys side, Harrison Niswander paced the Vikings, finishing in 10th place with a time of 16:51.8 to grab a spot on the All-Conference lineup.

JT York (20th place, 17:13.5), Jordan Rockey (23rd place, 17:16.1), Isaiah Clampitt (33rd place, 17:54.0), Greg Miller (34th place, 17:58.0), Gavin Bylerly (36th place, 18:04.3) and Dane Blackburn (44th place, 18:36.3) rounded out the Huntington North showing.

The boys and girls teams will return to the course on Saturday to compete in the Marion Sectional at Indiana Wesleyan University.