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Dragons fall in tennis regional, MV ineligible

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The tennis season ended for New Palestine Wednesday with a regional semifinal loss to Lawrence North at North Central.

The Dragons, who defeated Greenfield-Central Friday to win the sectional title, finished the year at 13-4. They were also county champs this season.

Lawrence North (11-9) advanced to face the winner of the other regional semifinal match between Hamilton Southeastern (14-3) and host North Central (15-1).

Another postseason tennis match between two Hancock County teams — the No. 1 doubles teams from Greenfield-Central and Mt. Vernon — will not be played.

Following a grievance by the Cougars, the IHSAA ruled Wednesday that the Marauders’ Ben Bobb and Corey Beck, who advanced out of the team sectional undefeated, were not eligible for postseason play because Bobb did not play at least half of the Marauders’ matches this season at doubles. Bobb started the year as a singles player, and then was moved to doubles with Beck shortly after Beck returned from an injury in the second half of the season.

G-C coach Jeff Sincroft felt like it was only fair to his players — Max Holtzclaw and Jake Kauth — to alert the IHSAA.

“The situation was brought to our attention by another coach last week, and I just wanted to do what was best for my guys,” he said. “Whether they lose their next match out or whatever the case might be, I just thought they should have a shot against people eligible to play in the tournament.

“I respect (MV coach Gabe Muterspaugh) a lot as a coach and the work he’s done at Mt. Vernon. However the situation came about is for him to comment on. I was just looking out for my guys.”

The rule dictating that players compete in at least half of a team’s matches at either singles or doubles, if they want to continue in the postseason at those positions, was adopted by the IHSAA several years ago at the behest of coaches, according to G-C athletic director Kevin Horrigan.

“It was proposed by tennis coaches to help keep fairness in the sport to help prevent coaches from changing their lineups around all the time in order to get an unfair advantage,” he said.

MV coach Gabe Muterspaugh was disappointed with the decision, but he took responsibility.

“It stinks because Corey just got back to 100 percent,” he said. “It is on me, because we had to try to win matches with Corey out … and the best chance with Corey out was with Ben at singles.

“Good luck to GC the rest of the year.”

Holtzclaw and Kauth, who also finished the team sectional undefeated, will play in the state tourney at North Central against a to-be-determined opponent. The foe and date of their match will depend on the results of the team regionals.

Mt. Vernon’s Bryce Bobb, at No. 1 singles, is also still alive in the tourney and awaiting an opponent.

All No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles players who finished the team sectional undefeated, while their full team lost, are eligible to continue in the postseason.


HSE 3, Greenfield-Central 0

Visiting Greenfield-Central was swept in three games by Hamilton Southeastern Tuesday, 25-15, 25-23, 25-21.

Rachel Irbe (11 kills, eight digs), Alex Colclazier (26 digs), Jordan Bunch (seven kills), Megan Bradley (21 assists) and Caitey Sosnowski (three aces, five digs) contributed for the Cougars.

“It was a very slow start for the Lady Cougars in Set 1,” G-C coach Rita Rouse said. “The Cougars came alive late in Set 2 and Set 3, but couldn’t overcome the very strong blocking team of HSE.”

G-C (16-9) faces host Eastern Hancock in the first round of the Hancock County Tournament Saturday.


Noblesville 3, Mt. Vernon 0

The visiting Marauders were felled by the Millers Tuesday, 25-14, 25-22, 28-26.

Mary Grace Ertel (nine kills, eight digs), Ellie Balbach (10 kills, 11 assists), Lauren James (24 digs), Abby Glazier (six kills, nine digs, two blocks) and Lexi Reasor (three blocks) paced Mt. Vernon.

MV hosts Warren Central today.

Shelbyville 3, New Palestine 0

The Golden Bears defeated the host Dragons in three games, 25-12, 25-9, 25-8.

NP (12-15, 1-5 Hoosier Heritage Conference) takes on MV in the first round of the county tournament Saturday.

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