Bishop McGuinness beat Mount Airy 7-2 in tennis Wednesday.
The defending conference champions faced a Bear team rebuilding after the loss of four seniors from the six starting spots.
Top seed Mitch Kessler made short work of Bishop’s Sam McLaughry, who moved up to the top spot in place of Kevin Weckworth. The all-conference player was out with an ankle injury suffered during the basketball season.
After Kessler’s 6-1, 6-1 victory, however, the Villains took the remaining five spots to wrap up the team win before doubles play began.
Second seed Justin Leonard lost a close first set 6-4 to Ben Jandkinski. He took a 2-1 lead in the second set before falling 6-2.
Blake Hensley fell in the third-seed match 6-0, 6-1 to John Abram.
Sophomore Jack Marion dropped the first set 6-1, but bounced back to play a close second set with Zack Jones.
“Marion trailed on 3-4 in the second set, but was unable to force a third-set tiebreaker,” said Coach Rodney Pell.
Fifth seed Robert Blizard had the longest match of the day. He lost 6-1, 6-2 to Jonathan Ingram, but each point was hard fought, according to the coach.
At the sixth spot, freshman Gentry Williamson lost 6-1, 6-2 to Lance Dittrich.
Williamson took several games to deuce or even multiple deuces, but he was unable to finish the games, according to Pell.
In doubles play, Jones and Ingram gave Bishop an 8-0 win at the third spot.
Leonard and Sam Brown fell behind 5-2 at the second spot, but won back-to-back games to draw closer. Jandkinski and Dittrich eventually won 8-5.
The top doubles teams put on a nice show.
Kessler and Hensley jumped out to a 4-1 lead, but the Villains rallied with two straight wins.
Eventually, Bishop’s McLaughry and Abram took an 8-7 lead.
Kessler and Hensley then won the next game to force a seven-point tiebreaker.
The Bears jumped out to a 6-3 lead in the tiebreaker, but Bishop rallied to tie the match. Mount Airy then took two straight points for the 8-6 win.
Mount Airy (0-2) travels to Surry Central today.