PLYMOUTH – Warsaw was served with tough competition Wednesday.

The Tigers’ tennis team won the No. 2 doubles match, but lost the other four at the Northern Lakes Conference Tournament at Plymouth High School.

The tournament format consisted of all eight conference teams competing in three singles brackets and two doubles brackets.

Jarret Orr and Michael Ray excelled for the Tigers, breezing to a 6-2, 6-0 victory over Goshen’s Axel Brown and Drake Crowder at No. 2 doubles.

“They just went out, they had very little mistakes,” said Warsaw coach Stacy Lind. “They kept the ball cross-court, and they kept it low and played well.”

Warsaw’s Spencer Britton and Nolan Knight showed true grit at No. 1 doubles.

“That’s some of the best doubles I’ve seen them play,” Lind said. “To go up against the No. 1 seed like that and  play three sets like that, I couldn’t ask for more from them.”

They faced the No. 1-seeded Concord duo of Nate Slabach and Travis Hermon. The Tigers were edged 7-6(6) in the first set, and were down early in the second set.

However, Britton and Knight worked together to win long volleys, and clawed their way back to a 6-3 victory.

The Tigers and Minutemen returned after a break for the third set. Slabach and Hermon hit their spots and pulled away for the 6-4 set win and match victory.

“Concord just stepped it up, and my boys fought hard,” Lind said.

Warsaw’s Caleb Williams faced Ryan Harmelink at No. 1 singles and lost 6-2, 6-0.

Reuben Williams played No. 2 singles for the Tigers, losing 6-1, 6-3 to NorthWood’s Ben Vincent, while Warsaw’s Brian Elliott fell 6-2, 6-1 to Concord’s Cal Whitaker at No. 3 singles.

Wawasee struggled to get much going and lost all five of its first-round matches.

Wawasee coach Shane Staley expected the match to be tough for the Warriors, who are playing multiple underclassmen.

“Inexperience shows, and that’s kind of what I figured,” Staley said. “But I did see some improvements with the first match of the round robin that we played with some of these teams and stuff.

“It’s kind of what we had to focus on right now, just making some strides and improving.”

The Tigers and Warriors will be back in action today at 4:30 p.m. at Plymouth.

Orr and Ray will continue in the winner’s bracket, while the rest of the players from Warsaw and all of Wawasee will play in the consolation bracket.

“It’s not over,” Lind said. “You need to go out there, you need to play.

“You need to give it your best effort and do the best you can, and get ready for sectionals.”



Northern Lakes Conference Tournament



Warsaw

Singles: No. 1 – Ryan Harmelink (G) def. Caleb Williams (W) 6-2, 6-0; No. 2 – Ben Vincent (NW) def. Reuben Williams 6-1, 6-3; No. 3 – Cal Whitaker (C) def. Brian Elliott 6-2, 6-1.

Doubles: No. 1 – Nate Slabach & Travis Hermon (C) def. Spencer Britton & Nolan Knight (W) 7-6(6), 3-6, 6-4; No. 2 – Axel Brown & Drake Crowder (G) def. Jarret Orr & Michael Ray (W) 6-2, 6-0.



Wawasee

Singles: No. 1 – Wes Troyer (NW) def. Zach Leedy (W) 6-1, 6-1; No. 2 – Freddy Buckingham (C) def. Graham Perek (W) 6-0, 6-1; No. 3 – Carlos Lighty (G) def. Colin Rhodes 6-0, 6-0.

Doubles: No. 1 – Jack Wysong & Trojan Schwartz (NW) def. Grant Brooks & Jacob Krugman (W) 6-1, 6-0; No. 2 –  Drew Harrell & Andy Rostron (P) def. Zeke Keim & Clayton Firestone (W) 6-0, 6-1.