Competing in the second round of the 2A dual team boys tennis state playoffs, Seaforth defeated North Lenoir, 7-2, at home Monday night. The Hawks also played Raleigh Charter on Wednesday in the tournament’s semifinals (match occurred after press time).
Head coach Peter Petrides’ team entered the tournament as the No. 1 team in the 2A bracket after amassing an overall record of 13-1 during the regular season. The Hawks won the Mid-Carolina Conference with a perfect 8-0 record and haven’t lost a dual team match since falling to Franklin Academy, 8-1.
Getting the job done for Seaforth on Monday in the second round were juniors Walker Magrinat, Felton Burleigh and Owen Strom and sophomore Henry McFall, who all won their singles matches. Magrinat, McFall and Strom all won in straight sets, while Burleigh rallied to win a third-set tie-breaker over North Lenoir freshman Casey Alston.
In doubles play, the Hawks swept North Lenoir — Burleigh and Magrinat won at No. 1, Strom and Matthew Bowser were victorious at No. 2 and sophomores Wakeland Branz and Henry McFall earned a win at No. 3.
Seaforth’s opponent in the state semfinals, Raleigh Charter, came into the playoffs as the No. 11 team in the 2A bracket. The Phoenix had an overall record of 16-2 and pulled off three road upsets over No. 6 Nash Central, No. 3 Franklin Academy and No. 2 North Johnston in the first three rounds of the state tournament.
Raleigh Charter’s top singles players are senior Ryan Hill (14-4 at No. 1), sophomore Lex Gu (16-1 at No. 2), junior Marshall McClure (15-2 at No. 3) and junior Josh Lee (13-4 at No. 4). The Phoenix use a number of different combinations in doubles play.
Wednesday’s matchup offers Seaforth a chance at revenge. Last spring, the Hawks — who were competing as a varsity program for the first time — lost to Raleigh Charter, 8-1, in the first round of the 2A tournament. Seaforth’s lone win came at No. 3 doubles, while Magrinat fell to Hill at No. 1 singles in straight sets, 6-2 and 6-1.
This season, Magrinat is 13-1 at No. 1 singles, his lone loss coming to Northwood’s Jio Sumogod back in the team’s first match of the season. Since then, he has won all but one of his matches — a comeback victory over Holmes’ Trent Spear in the second round of the state playoffs — in straight sets.
Sports Editor Jeremy Vernon can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @jbo_vernon.