Tennis team continues to dominate

Published 11:47 am Thursday, April 11, 2019

That Davie’s tennis team is undefeated with a freshman, three sophomores and a junior leading the way is unfair. Not only is Davie 9-0 overall and 7-0 in the Central Piedmont Conference, they haven’t been challenged.

“9-0 is where we wanted to be,” coach Shane Nixon said. “It has been a great year, but we are far from done.”

The War Eagles handled visiting West Forsyth 6-3 on April 1. It was actually the closest match of the season. Davie quickly clinched at No. 1 doubles as it overcame the absence of Luke Stillson, who won 6-1, 6-0 at No. 5 in the first meeting.

“Luke had travel difficulties and wasn’t available,” Nixon said. “It was the perfect spot to lay the proverbial egg. Coach (Terri) Eanes and I talked about that. We talked in our pre-match time about it. In the CPC, you get someone good every day. I know West isn’t as good as they have been, but they are still a good team. For us to come off (spring) break, when they played two matches last week, and play this well tells me all I need to know about my team.”

Ben Fleming (6-0, 6-0), C Crenshaw (4-6, 6-0, 10-7), Cren Rosenbaum (6-1, 6-0) and Jack Nixon (6-1, 6-0) were victorious in singles. It was the second time this season that Crenshaw pulled out a third-set tiebreaker to protect his perfect record.

“Ben played as well as he ever has today,” Nixon said. “C again put himself in position to be in trouble and again got himself out of it. We work really hard on splits and winning when we are tired. As a freshman, C really is embodying that. Ben and C are also in perfect stride as a doubles team.

“Cren and Jack both played great. Cren’s serve, especially in singles, was really on. His ground strokes are among the best on our squad. So when he gets his serve in, he is tough to beat. The West coach told me during the match that she warned Jack’s opponent that he’d have to hit a bunch of winners because Jack is too consistent to beat himself. She is right.”

Fleming/Crenshaw (10-1) and Rosenbaum/Nixon (10-4) triumphed as West (1-8, 0-4 CPC) suffered its seventh straight loss.

•••

Davie had an easy time against visiting Glenn on April 3, winning 9-0 over the winless Bobcats.

The winners in singles were Fleming (6-0, 6-0), Crenshaw (6-1, 6-0), Rosenbaum (6-0, 6-0), Stillson (6-0, 6-0), Nixon (6-0, 6-0) and Sammy Rosenquist (6-0, 6-0). The winners in doubles were Stillson/Nixon (10-1), Ben Norman/Mike Werbeck (10-1) and Kenan Boswell/David Benfield (10-1).

“Good teams win when they are supposed to,” Nixon said after Glenn fell to 0-9, 0-5. “Today, with all due respect to Glenn, we were supposed to win – and we did.”

•••

It was more of the same when Davie hosted Reynolds on April 4. The War Eagles romped 8-1.

“Reynolds is a really good team,” he said after the Demons stumbled to 5-10, 4-4. “They feature one all-CPC performer from last year, and he isn’t even their No. 1. They have another guy, now playing three, that pushed every No. 3 in the conference last year and split with us both times. They’ve added a couple of good freshmen. So I hope that puts to bed any talk of ‘you haven’t played anyone.’”

Davie clinched the decision in singles, getting wins from Fleming (6-3, 6-4), Crenshaw (6-7, 6-0, 10-7), Rosenbaum (6-3, 6-3), Stillson (6-2, 6-1) and Nixon (6-0, 6-2).

“Unbelievable,” Nixon said. “I knew we were playing pretty well, maybe really well, but this is beyond my expectations. And that is to say nothing of sweeping doubles.

“Ben is just playing so well. Of course, he is the reigning CPC singles champ, and he is playing better than he did in the CPC Tournament last year. In singles and doubles he is a dominant force. Off the court, he is developing as a leader of our team. His maturity on and off the court is amazing.

“What do you say about C? His individual start is almost unbelievable. He is putting himself in some tough spots, but he is getting himself out of them almost as quickly. To have a combined singles/doubles record of 15-0 to start a career? All I can say is wow.

“Cren is easily playing the best tennis of his Davie career. In singles he has just dominated at any spot we’ve put him. In doubles, he has played with a couple different partners and it hasn’t mattered. He just keeps winning.

“Luke is also playing his best tennis right now. He has missed a couple matches, but there is no rust. In both singles and doubles he is playing lights out. Luke might be the best athlete on our team and is really showing how that works for him in tennis.

“My all-time favorite Davie tennis player does not disappoint. Jack missed one match while down with the flu. Since then, all Jack does is win. It matters not what seed he plays or who his partner is in doubles. He is a great competitor. As his coach, I am so proud of him. As his dad, well, I am even more proud.”

Davie swept doubles behind Fleming/Crenshaw (8-4), Stillson/Nixon (8-4) and Rosenbaum/Rosenquist (8-1).

For the season, Crenshaw and Rosenbaum are 9-0, Nixon 8-0, Fleming 8-1 and Stillson 7-0. In doubles, Fleming/Crenshaw are 6-0 and Stillson/Nixon 5-0.