116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS - As victorious Iowa City High senior Joe Hoff reported to the scorer's table, he felt a tug on his arm.
A word of congratulations coming his way?
'Lose,” said 10-year-old Jimin Jung, younger brother of close friend and two-time defending singles state champion Jiung Jung of Iowa City West.
Hoff - the unseeded defending state runner-up to Jung - took a significant step toward a possible rematch after dispatching third-seeded Jacob Panjwani of Bettendorf, 6-4, 6-1, in a Class 2A singles state quarterfinal Friday at Veterans Memorial Tennis Center.
'I wouldn't want two easy first two rounds because then you might not be prepared when the big guys hit you,” Hoff said. 'It was definitely great competition today. They both played great and it got me ready for tomorrow. I feel like I'm kind of ready for tomorrow.”
Hoff defeated Moise Habineza of West Des Moines Valley in the opening round at Westfield Tennis Club, 6-0, 6-1. No. 1-seed Jung opened with a 6-1, 6-0 ouster of North Scott's Teddy Weaver, then rallied from a 3-0 first-set deficit to vanquish defending doubles state champion Sriram Sugumaran of Pleasant Valley in the quarterfinals, 6-4, 6-2.
In the semifinals Saturday at 10 a.m., Hoff will face second-seeded Jonny Bowser of Fort Dodge, while Jung tangles with No. 4-seed Tim Ellis of Ames. Winners will meet in a 2 p.m. final at Vets.
'I'm just going to have to play good, solid tennis,” said Hoff, a Creighton signee. 'I'm going to have to be ready to hit some good shots and if I were to make it to the final, with Jiung every single match, no matter what, is going to be a close one. He doesn't really give you too many easy points, so I'm ready for two very close matches tomorrow.”
Hoff leaned on a newly-potent backhand and stronger net game to get past fellow Hawkeye Tennis Academy pupil Jung in a dual May 2. In their meeting at the district final nine days later, Hoff claimed the first set but injury-defaulted due to cramps in the third. As a result of his district runner-up status, Hoff was not eligible to be seeded for the state tournament.
The same scenario played out in the state doubles bracket, where defending state runners-up Cole Schneider and Jack Wenzel were unseeded after a district final defeat.
Schneider and Wenzel enacted a token of revenge for an April 25 Linn-Mar loss and stormed into the semifinals with a 3-6, 6-1, 7-5 win over the Lions' second-seeded doubles team of Ben Hediger and Lucas Huffman.
'I feel like we were more aggressive as a team,” Schneider said. 'We weren't letting them control the match. We were controlling the match, really coming to the net and putting balls away.”
The top-seeded doubles tandem from Cedar Rapids Washington, Rami Scheetz and Ty Sherman, also advanced to the semifinals with a 6-2, 6-1 triumph over Nathan Wong and Vincent Gnad of Pleasant Valley.
The day was clearly a showcase for the Mississippi Valley Conference, which claimed half of the eight semifinal entrants across both brackets.
'Playing all these teams during the season really helps prepare us,” Wenzel said. 'It shows that we are all really tough players.”
Schneider and Wenzel will attempt to reach the state doubles final for the second year in a row when they play third-seeded Josh VandenBerg and Nicholas Matthews of Mason City Saturday at 10 a.m.
Scheetz and Sherman will meet unbeaten and third-seeded Isaac Luebke and Yash Singh of Bettendorf, a surprising selection from the morning coaches meeting at No. 3 given their record and head-to-head win over the second-seeded team from Linn-Mar.
In the 1A state tournament at Byrnes Park in Waterloo, the Cedar Rapids Xavier doubles team of Jon Lansing and Charlie Esker earned a No. 1 seed and reached the semifinals with a 6-2, 6-0 quarterfinal victory over Kade Carpenter and Marcus Klemme of Spencer. Another Metro prep, Marion senior Nate Meister, backed up his No. 1 seed and reached the singles semifinals.
Tournaments in both classes conclude Saturday.
BOYS' TENNIS STATE TOURNAMENT
At Veterans Memorial Tennis Center
First round -
No. 1 Jiung Jung (Iowa City West) def. Teddy Weaver (North Scott), 6-1, 6-0; No. 2 Jonny Bowser (Fort Dodge) def. Donovan Chleborad (West Des Moines Dowling), 6-0, 6-1; No. 3 Jacob Panjwani (Bettendorf) def. Aditya Subramaniam (Pleasant Valley), 6-1, 6-0; No. 4 Tim Ellis (Ames) def. Griffin Laib (Ankeny), 6-1, 6-0; Sriram Sugumaran (Pleasant Valley) def. Austin Grossmann (Waukee), 6-0, 6-; David Lu (West Des Moines Dowling) def. James Susman (Des Moines Roosevelt), 6-4, 6-3; Joe Hoff (Iowa City High) def. Moise Habineza (West Des Moines Valley), 6-0, 6-1; Luke VanDonslear (Linn-Mar) def. Noah Burmeister (Waukee), 6-3, 6-1.
Jung (ICW) def. Sugumaran (PV), 6-4, 6-2; Bowser (FD) def. VanDonslear (LM), 6-1, 6-3; Hoff (ICH) def. Panjwani (Bett), 6-4, 6-1; Ellis (Ames) def. Lu (Dowl), 6-1, 6-4.
First round -
No. 1 Rami Scheetz/Ty Sherman (Cedar Rapids Washington) def. Muneeb Nadeem/Anudeep Akula (Waukee), 6-1, 6-0; No. 2 Ben Hediger/Lucas Huffman (Linn-Mar) def. Nathan Tauke/Alex Alrichs (Dubuque Hempstead), 6-2, 6-1; No. 3 Josh VandenBerg/Nicholas Matthews (Mason City) def. Joseph Shie/Andrew Shie (Davenport Central), 6-3, 7-5; No. 4 Isaac Luebke/Yash Singh (Bettendorf) def. Andy Kim/John Kim (Ames), 6-0, 6-2; Nathan Wong/Vincent Gnad (Pleasant Valley) def. Brian VandenBerg/Josh Hansen (Mason City), 6-3, 6-3; Brook Norwood/Roy Jensen (West Des Moines Valley) def. Jack Drey/Eddie Bening (West Des Moines Dowling), 6-3, 5-7, 6-0; Varun Myneni/Matt Galles (West Des Moines Valley) def. Jack Lucas/Chris Yao (Johnston), 7-6 (4), 7-6 (4); Cole Schneider/Jack Wenzel (Iowa City West) def. Nick Weyers/Grant Roszhart (Waukee), 6-1, 6-0.
Scheetz/Sherman (CRW) def. Wong/Gnad (PV), 6-2, 6-1; Schneider/Wenzel (ICW) def. Hediger/Huffman (LM), 3-6, 6-1, 7-5; J. VandenBerg/Matthews (MC) def. Myneni/Galles (WDMV), 6-1, 6-0; Luebke/Singh (Bett) def. Norwood/Jensen (WDMV), 6-3, 6-4.
(Byrnes Park Tennis Center)
First round -
No. 1 Nate Meister (Marion) def. Tom Zuendorf (Spirit Lake), 6-2, 6-0; Luke Fennelly (Davenport Assumption) def. Reed Morris (Clarke), 6-4, 6-0; Tanner Finken (Carroll Kuemper) def. Marcos Vila (Iowa Falls), 6-1, 6-2; No. 4 Kai Vessey (Fairfield Maharishi) def. Daniel Buchanan (Waterloo Columbus), 6-1, 6-1; Jack Thomas (Davenport Assumption) def. No. 3 Adam Ernsting (Waverly-Shell Rock), 3-6, 6-2, 6-4; Alex Chekal (Glenwood) def. Caleb Hamerlinck (Ballard), 6-1, 6-0; Evan Moon (North Polk) def. Bryce Vinyard (Davis County), 6-2, 6-0; No. 2 Jake Malik (LeMars) def. Maverick Miller (Marion), 6-1, 6-2.
Meister (Mar) def. Luke Fennelly (DA), 6-2, 6-3; Vessey (FM) def. Finken (CK), 6-2, 6-0; Thomas (DA) def. Chekal (Glen), 7-6 (5), 6-3; Malik (LeMars) def. Moon (NP), 7-6 (2), 2-6, 6-2.
First round -
No. 1 Jon Lansing/Charlie Esker (Cedar Rapids Xavier) def. Mark Mosher/Brody Echer (Ballard), 6-2, 6-0; Kade Carpenter/Marcus Klemme (Spencer) def. Jonathan Hernandez/Dante Seaney (Fort Madison), 6-0, 6-1; Daniel Zhu/Devan Burke (Fairfield Maharishi) def. Andrew Troe/Caden Burkamper (Boone), 6-2, 6-1; No. 4 Sam Lauritsen/Adam Konfrst (Glenwood) def. Jacob Peterson/Mac Adams (Clear Lake), 7-5, 6-4; No. 3 Kyle Marek/Jake Thompson (LeMars) def. Thomas Diaz/Cameron Jourdan (Albia), 6-0, 6-1; Grant Podhajsky/Cooper McDermott (Atlantic) def. Gannon Courtright/Navin Martin (Fairfield), 6-2, 6-0; Mason Hulse/Corbin Wafful (Boone) def. Jacob Cook/Jaden Driskell (Creston), 6-4, 6-2; No. 2 Luke Willis/Ryan Willis (Waverly-Shell Rock) def. Alex Hinrichs/Ryan Jasper (Cedar Rapids Xavier), 6-2, 6-3.
Lansing/Esker (CRX) def. Carpenter/Klemme (Spencer), 6-2, 6-0; Lauritsen/Konfrst (Glen) def. Zhu/Burke (FM), 6-3, 6-4; Marek/Thompson (LeMars) def. Podhajsky/McDermott (Atl), 7-5, 6-1; L. Willis/R. Willis (WSR) def. Hulse/Wafful (Boone), 6-3, 6-3.
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