After tough start to season, Seymour tops Shelbyville for season’s 1st victory

For The Tribune

The Seymour Owls boys tennis team captured its first win of the season with a 4-1 victory Tuesday at home against Shelbyville.

Owls coach Brad Emerson said it was good to get the first win since the Owls started out the season a little choppier than he expected.

“It’s nice, we’ve had a couple of rough matches the first two matches,” Emerson said. “Providence was real good, but getting this one — I knew it would be a competitive match from what we had last year and knowing that they lost a couple players, I knew we’d have a great shot at winning. So it’s good, it’s too bad we didn’t win five otherwise we would have cleaned up with the doubles, but this game is one of those where it’s such a flow of play that you could start out hot in the first set and then for some reason the wheels come off and in a second and you’re in a battle.”

Emerson pointed to his No. 1 doubles team as an example of how momentum can change quickly during a match.

Grant Handloser and Josiah Rudge started slow before earning their way back to winning a come-back victory against Shelbyville’s JT Uhls and Grant Martin 6-2, 7-6 (7-1).

“They did well the first set and sometimes you let up just a bit and the other team steps on the gas and now you’re in a battle,” Emerson said of Handloser and Rudge’s match.

Handloser said he was encouraged by his and Rudge’s victory because they can sometimes get caught in situations where they experience slumps.

“I think that it was definitely important for Josiah and I to come back because we struggle because we can go on really good streaks, but we can also get down on ourselves and get on losing streaks and to take that third set was definitely a good thing tonight,” he said.

Handloser said he and Rudge try to lean on each other for motivation when the duo is struggling.

“I think Josiah and I try to use each other, like if I can tell Josiah is down I will try to pick him up and if I’m down, he will try to pick me up,” he said.

At No. 1 singles, the Owls’ Alex Berry bested Evan Phares 6-2, 6-2.

Ty McCory took the Owls’ No. 2 singles match 6-0, 6-3 and Adam Berry maintained the final singles spot with a 6-2, 6-2 victory.

The Owls’ lone loss came at the No. 2 doubles spot, as Luke Folte and Bryce Asher defeated Sam Voss and Hao Li 3-6, 6-2, 7-5.

The Owls will host Jennings County at home Thursday.

Jordan Richart is a correspondent for The (Seymour) Tribune.