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Boys' tennis preview: Mt. Vernon

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LAST SEASON: 12-9, 4-3 HHC

Hancock County Tournament runner-up; sectional champions; lost to Lawrence North in regional

PROJECTED LINEUP (with position, player, grade):

No. 1 singles — Bryce Bobb (12)

No. 2 singles — Ben Bobb (11)

No. 3 singles — Grant Williams (10)

No. 1 doubles — Andrew Noble (12)/Chandler Hines (12)

No. 2 doubles — Mark Alvarado (10)/Brendon Ware (9)

Head coach: Gabe Muterspaugh (17th season)

Outlook: It’s all about the Bobbs this season, as brothers Bryce and Ben are the only Marauders with significant varsity experience returning from the 2011 sectional-championship team.

All-Hoosier Heritage Conference selection Kendall Ryan (No. 2 singles), Reid Eberhard (No. 3) and the No. 1 doubles team of Ben Bobb and Corey Beck delivered sectional victories in the Marauders’ 3-2 semifinal win over New Palestine last season, but Ryan and Eberhard have graduated, and Beck, a senior this year, suffered a knee injury the first day of practice and is likely out of action until at least the Hancock County Tournament on Sept. 8, according to MV coach Gabe Muterspaugh.

With Ryan gone from No. 2 singles, Ben Bobb moves into the slot behind Bryce Bobb at No. 1.

Bryce was an All-HHC selection last season at the top singles spot.

Grant Williams, a sophomore promoted from the JV unit, is in at No. 3 for Eberhard.

“The Bobb brothers gotta lead us this year,” Muterspaugh said. “Bryce is a great player and Ben is just a winner.

“Grant has got to grow up quick and follow in the footsteps of his buddy Kendall Ryan.”

At doubles, 2011 county JV champs Andrew Noble and Chandler Hines are in the No. 1 slot as seniors, replacing the graduated Jacob Shephard-Zak Weaver duo.

At No. 2 doubles, sophomore Mark Alvarado and freshman Brendon Ware have the spot for now, but seniors Nick Pham and Evan Smith are also contending for playing time.

“Our dubs are getting better,” Muterspaugh said. “Hines and Noble are athletic as all can be but need consistency. No. 2 dubs is by committee right now and we will see who rises to the top.”

First serve: The Marauders cruised to a 5-0 season-opening victory over Shenandoah on Monday. They’ll take the week off before visiting Pendleton Heights on Monday. 

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