Senior captain John Foley of the Wayzata boys tennis team left his mark in Trojan history during the State Class AA Tournament last week at Baseline Tennis Center.
Foley went 3-0 in Team Tournament competition as the Trojans took home the consolation championship, and then he upset Joe Mairs from The Blake School in the first round of the State Singles draw the following day before bowing out in round two.
“John has the second best record we’ve ever had in singles,” Wayzata head coach Jeff Prondzinski said, harkening back to the years when Nick Beaty had a state championship and a state runner-up finish.
“The best thing about John’s game is the way he competes for every point,” Prondzinski said. “He doesn’t have a weakness that an opponent can exploit.”
Foley plays tennis the way masters play chess. He is seldom caught out of position and has a stellar baseline game.
“He works hard at countering from the baseline,” Prondzinski said.
Wayzata played three close matches in the State Team Tournament, beginning with a 4-3 loss to Orono June 4. The following day, the Trojans bounced back with a 4-3 win over Lakeville South and a 6-1 win over Duluth East in the consolation championship match.
“You’ve got to play your best to be the best,” Prondzinski observed. “We played a good match against Orono, but sometimes the other team plays better.”
Foley had an incredible win against Orono’s Karthik Papisetty at first singles. After losing the first set 7-6, Foley stormed back to win the second set 6-1. Since the team result had been decided already, the rivals played a pro set to determine the winner, and Foley prevailed in a close one, 10-8.
Senior Michael Deal and junior Will Deters won the first doubles point for Wayzata, 6-4, 6-4 in a good match with Emmett Halloran and Benjamin Bissen. Wayzata’s third point came in second doubles, where Sanjit Shah and Jayho Hong set down Matias Maule and Hugh Perrill, 6-0, 6-2.
In the win over Lakeville South, Wayzata’s points came from Foley at No. 1 singles, Collin Beduhn at No. 2 singles, Hong at No. 3 singles and Jonathan Nudler at No. 4 singles.
Nudler played especially well, winning his match 6-0, 6-0. Beduhn, the 6-foot-5 eighth-grader was likewise dominant in a 6-1, 6-1 victory.
Lakeville South came up with three-set wins in second and third doubles to make the final score close.
Wayzata played its best match of the tournament with consolation-championship medals on the line.
Foley won his match 6-0, 6-1, and Beduhn won a three-set match at second singles. Hong won at third singles in a 6-0, 6-0 whitewash.
The Trojans had a doubles sweep to complete the victory. Deal and Deters won 6-4, 6-1 at No. 1, while Shah and Austin Cheng won 6-2, 6-2 at No. 2. In third doubles, Anthony Pothacamury and Eric Carlson scored a 6-3, 6-2 victory.
“In the Duluth East match, we played better ... more relaxed,” Prondzinski said. “A victory in the consolation finals was a good way to close the year.”
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