3 seniors combine for 217 tennis wins
By Brian Pitts
An absolutely wonderful era of Davie boys tennis came to an end in the Midwest Regional at Hopewell High on May 7.
Three seniors who helped Davie win 39 of 51 matches from 2018-21, a trio that combined for 217 singles/doubles wins, swung the Davie racket for the final time.
“These three seniors (Jack Nixon, Cren Rosenbaum and Luke Stillson) meant more to me than I can put in words,” father/coach Shane Nixon said. “Seeing them finish, knowing I won’t coach them anymore, it has been a lot to take in.”
Sophomore Burke Rosenbaum was his dominant self in the first round, winning 6-1, 6-1 against a guy from Lake Norman. In the second round, though, he went down against a heavyweight from Hough by scores of 6-3, 6-1.
Davie’s incredible sophomore finished the season with a 15-2 record.
“Arguably that kid (from Hough) was the second-best player and no worst than third (in the regional),” Nixon said. “It was a tough draw for Burke, who was seeded third. He played well, really well at times. He will learn from this and state qualification is in his future – I’d bet on it.”
Stillson and Nixon played a scintillating first-round match against Lake Norman. They lost by a razor-thin margin – 6-7 (9-11), 6-4, 4-6. For the year, they went 9-2 as doubles partners.
“That team was good, but I think Jack and Luke would tell you they should have beaten them,” the coach said. “These two seniors really battled to the end. You could see how much it meant to them when they were walking off the court. I hurt for them, but that is part of the deal.”
C. Rosenbaum and junior C Crenshaw lost 6-1, 6-0 to Hough in the first round. As you can see by B. Rosenbaum’s second-round score and the C. Rosenbaum/Crenshaw margin of defeat, the collection of talent at Hopewell was jaw-dropping.
“They drew the team that just might win the doubles,” Nixon said. “They weren’t seeded because they had not played together at all, but the kids C and Cren played are legit. It was a really tough draw. I was so proud of the way they didn’t just give in. I hated to see Cren get a draw like that in what was his last match at Davie, but again, that is how tennis works at the high school level.”
Thus the curtain closed on a tennis era the War Eagles will never forget. They produced team records of 12-6, 10-4, 6-0 and 11-2. In their singles careers, Nixon went 45-4, C. Rosenbaum 37-12 and Stillson 33-7. In their doubles careers, Nixon went 39-16, Stillson 36-14 and C. Rosenbaum 27-18. Combine singles and doubles and you’ve got records of 84-20 by Nixon, 69-21 by Stillson and 64-30 by C. Rosenbaum.
“I am so proud of all five guys who played today,” Nixon said. “Burke and C will be back; they’ll make some noise at the regional level again. Watching these three seniors walk off the court in a Davie uniform for the last time … the tears in my eyes are not from allergies.”
Notes: B. Rosenbaum is 21-2 in singles over two years, while Crenshaw is 28-8 across three years. In doubles, Crenshaw is 22-7 and B. Rosenbaum 13-1. … Nixon’s seven-year coaching record is 76-28.
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