GLENDALE — By beating the Nogales’ boys tennis team in straight sets, Catalina Foothills won its 17th straight match and got back to the state finals.
The top-seeded Falcons won decisively 5-0 over the No. 5 Apaches, with each Foothills player winning in straight sets Friday.
The Falcons will face No. 2 Salpointe Catholic today for the title at the Paseo Racquet Center at 2 p.m. Foothills topped Salpointe 7-2 in a March 19 match.
Friday, Foothills’ Nate Rasmussen and Dalton Reisig each won their singles matches 6-0, 6-1, and sophomore John Miller remained undefeated after beating the Apaches’ Diego Garcia 6-2, 6-0 in the clinching match.
The teams had to start play at 9 a.m.
“It’s hard coming up here so early in the morning, but they were focused,” Foothills coach David King said about the drive to Glendale. “They took care of business and played efficient, smart matches.”
No. 2 Salpointe Catholic 5, No. 3 Gilbert Williams Field 0: At Paseo, the Lancers won their 12th straight match and moved to the state finals for the second straight season.
Sophomore Yash Parikh, the singles state champion, wrapped up his match quickly with a 6-0, 6-1 win.
Parikh said he is hopeful to win both an individual title and a team one.
“I was pretty excited about that,” Parikh said. “But, the team one is the most important. This win gives us a lot of confidence, that’s the most important thing.”
Lancers coach John Condes knows there will be no surprises today against the Falcons, as each team is familiar with one another.
“They’re really good,” said Condes. “We know how good they are. Everyone knows each other. We know how they play.”
Division III boys
No. 2 Pusch Ridge Christian 5, No. 3 Goodyear Estrella Foothills 3: At Paseo, the Lions muscled out a win to reach the state championship for the fourth straight season.
After trading the first few singles matches, Camron Vick and Brenden Bernal etched out singles victories, putting the Lions up 4-2 heading to doubles.
Though the result took a little longer than Pusch Ridge coach David Towne would have liked, he’s still pleased with the result.
“One of our goals was to get back to the finals,” Towne said.
“Two years ago, we were in the finals and this season, there is no one from that team left. I’m just so proud of these guys. They’re gamers, and they know how to win.”
Pusch Ridge will face Thatcher for the Division III state championship today at 5 p.m. at Paseo.