Bears spoil Pack’s senior night
By By BRIAN HAINES, Sports Writer
The image captured the day perfectly.
Washington’s No. 1 seed Archie Griffin’s face as red as a cardinal as he stood on the tennis court, clinging to the fence, as he spoke to his teammates with the sun beaming down on his back during a hiatus in his singles match against New Bern on Thursday.
Five feet to his left, Griffin’s counter part Isaac Clowens was doing the exact same thing, while sporting the same exhausted look. The whole scene was reminiscent of two heavyweight boxers going to their respective corners during a title bout.
Like any good fighter, the two resumed their match, but in the end Clowens and New Bern was too much for the Pam Pack to over come as Washington fell 8-1 to the Bears.
The loss to New Bern was the Pack’s second this season, but Washington coach Michelle Elks was much more pleased at her team’s effort in the rematch.
The close call was the last one at home for Washington seniors Robert Dail, Zach Ware, Lea Rodriguez, Josh Carter and Griffin, as the Pam Pack played its final home match of the season.
Elks said the contributions of the seniors has been vital this year.
Carter, a senior and the Pam Pack’s fifth seed, provided the Pack’s only win as he topped Jed Moaden 6-4, 0-6 (10-6). Griffin lost his bout 7-5, 6-1, while Dail, the No. 2 seed, fell 6-0, 6-3 to Ricky Nelson. No. 3 seed Joshua Elks lost to Adam Bryan 6-4, 6-0, fourth-seeded Mat Batchelor lost a heartbreaker 5-7, 7-6, (7-2) to John Finlayson. Washington’s sixth-seed Gray Stowe also lost in a tie breaker, falling 4-6, 6-1 (11-9) to Warren Byrd.
After the match, Elks said she was pleased with the effort turned in by Carter.
As if playing against the 4-A Bears wasn’t tough enough, the Pack also battled the sun. After playing a match in Tuesday’s chilly weather, Washington appeared to struggle from fatigue on Thursday as the temperature flirted with the 80s. Elks said the heat became a factor as the match went on.
The Bears swept through doubles play as Clowens and Nelson topped Griffin and Elks 8-3, Bryan and Byrd beat Dail and Carter 8-1, while Batchelor and Stowe lost 8-1 to Finlayson and Moaden.
NEW BERN 7, WASHINGTON 2
Isaac Clowens (NB) d. Archie Griffin, 7-5, 6-1; Ricky Nelson (NB) d. Robert Dail, 6-0, 6-3; Adam Bryan (NB) d. Joshua Elks, 6-4, 6-0; John Finlayson (NB) d. Mat Batchelor, 5-7, 7-6 (7-2), Josh Carter (W) d. Jed Moaden, 7-5, 0-6, (10-6); Warren Byrd (NB) d. Gray Stowe, 4-6, 6-1 (11-9).
Clowens/Nelson (NB) d. Griffin/Elks, 8-3; Bryan/Byrd (NB) d. Dail/Carter, 8-1, Finlayson/Moaden (NB) d. Batch/Stowe, 8-1