Dutch tennis defends District 9-AA championship

The St. Marys Area Flying Dutch tennis team successfully defended their District 9 Class AA team title Wednesday when they defeated the Elk County Catholic Crusaders by a 4-1 score in a match played at Benzinger Park.“It was a very, very good match. The boys did well,” said St. Marys coach Sue Lepovetsky. “We spent a long time preparing for this, especially with the weather.”“It’s nice to see the team repeat as District 9 champions,” she added.The Dutch went up 1-0 when Brandon Romain defeated Ben Wortman 6-1, 6-2 at second singles.Nathan Hansen gave the Dutch the 2-0 lead when he defeated Shane Mancuso 6-2, 6-2 at first singles.St. Marys clinched the title when Keith Meyer downed Peter Pontzer 6-1, 6-0 at third singles, giving St. Marys the 3-0 lead.St. Marys’ first double duo of Dylan Wiesner and Thomas Murmann gave the Dutch the 4-0 lead when they defeated Nate Dattoli and Tyler Herzing 6-1, 6-0.The Crusaders got on the board when Scott Krellner and Darren Simons defeated Brandon Orr and Michael Fox 6-2, 6-2 at second doubles.“I am glad we got on the board this year. Last year they beat us 5-0,” said ECCHS coach Nick Caggiano.“The whole team effort this year has been great. They put everything into it every match.“Shane continues to improve. He is serving well, which bodes well for his future. Ben came up short today, but he is playing aggressive tennis. Peter was a little overpowered today, but he is playing consistent tennis.“Nate and Tyler were a little overmatched today. They were challenged today and their competitive nature showed through. Scott and Darren really pulled it together with their ability. They showed determination in their match.”The Dutch will enter the PIAA Class AA team tournament next Tuesday when they travel to the Alpha Tennis Center in Harmar to take on the District 7 champion at a time to be announced.The Crusaders will return to action today when they play DuBois Central in a doubleheader at the Benzinger and Memorial park courts. Action is set to begin at 3:30 p.m.The District 9 Class AAA and AA doubles tournaments are scheduled to be played Monday at the DuBois Area High School courts.In Class AAA, DuBois defeated Punxsutawney 4-1 to advance to Tuesday’s PIAA Class AAA tournament.The results of Wednesday’s matches follow:First singles - Nathan Hansen - SM defeated Shane Mancuso - EC, 6-2, 6-2.Second singles - Brandon Romain - SM defeated Ben Wortman - EC, 6-1, 6-2.Third singles - Keith Meyer - SM defeated Peter Pontzer - EC, 6-1, 6-0.First doubles - Dylan Wiesner and Thomas Murmann - SM defeated Nate Dattoli and Tyler Herzing - EC, 6-1, 6-0.Second doubles - Scott Krellner and Darren Simons - EC defeated Brandon Orr and Michael Fox - SM, 6-2, 6-2.