Friday Harbor tennis team tallies three straight

The Friday Harbor Wolverines notched their third consecutive tennis win Sept. 23, obtaining a 3-2 victory at home Tuesday over Lake Stevens.

The Wolverines lost to Coupeville on the road Thursday. Their record is now 3-1.

Against Lake Stevens, without two top players in the lineup, Friday Harbor reached into its roster to fill the gaps and grabbed an early advantage against a mish-mash squad of varsity and junior varsity players from 4A Division Lake Stevens.

Senior Michael Sandifer easily dispatched the Vikings’ Andrew Carlson, 8-3, in No. 1 singles, while Friday Harbor’s No. 1 doubles Pablo Lopez and Nils Nelson cruised over their opponent 8-0 to give he Wolverines an early 2-0 edge in the best-of-five match. After that, the contest was up for grabs.

Playing No. 2 singles for the first time, Friday Harbor’s Conor Lanphere jumped out to an early lead against Viking senior Andre Smith. But momentum slipped away from the Wolverine sophomore down the stretch and Smith, taking advantage of a series of unforced errors, fought his way back into the match.

Lanphere held serve to even the contest at 7-7 but faltered in the tie-breaker, and Smith claimed the win at 8-7, (7-1).

Meanwhile, junior Trevor Youngquist, thrust into No. 3 singles competition, had little success against the Vikings’ John Benefiel, who notched Lake Stevens’ second win with a 8-1 victory. But Friday Harbor’s Nick Roberts and Brent Sandifer, teaming up in the No. 2 doubles slot, clinched the match for the Wolverines with a decisive 8-3 victory over Lake Stevens’ freshmen McKenzie Simon and Kevin Loughlin.

Next: The Wolverines are on the road today at South Whidbey. They host a tournament at home Saturday, beginning at 11:15 a.m.

— Scott Rasmussen

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