High School Sports

Edwardsville’s doubles team of Trimpe, Gray finish fourth in state tennis tournament

Edwardsville High’s doubles team of freshman Zach Trimpe and sophomore Alex Gray was defeated twice Saturday and finished in fourth place at the state tennis tournament in suburban Chicago.

Trimpe and Gray were defeated in the semifinals 6-2, 6-2 by Deerfield’s Chris Casati and Niko Wasilewicz, then fell 7-6, 4-6, 6-2 to Highland Park’s David Aizenberg and Brandon Lew in the the third-place match.

“Fourth place is an outstanding achievement for Zach and Alex, and it’s great for our program,” Edwardsville coach Dave Lipe said. “It’s the second time in five years that we’ve finished fourth place in doubles, so it’s a mark of consistency.”

Fourth place is an outstanding achievement for Zach and Alex, and it’s great for our program. It’s the second time in five years that we’ve finished fourth place in doubles, so it’s a mark of consistency.

Edwardsville boys tennis coach Dave Lipe

Trimpe and Gray squandered a 5-2 lead in the first set, eventually falling in a tiebreaker. They rallied to win the second set before succumbing.

“The last match was very competitive,” Lipe said. “We had our chances, up 5-2 in the first set. But we were unable to close out the first set. We missed some balls up 5-2, and that came back to haunt us. The (Highland Park) kids kept good poise and kept coming at us. It was just a really competitive match, with lots of momentum swings.

“But it was a good weekend, overall, for Zach and Alex. I think they’re disappointed, but I think they’re OK with how they played. They weren’t happy just to be there.”

Trimpe was satisfied.

“I’m pretty happy with how we finished this weekend,” Trimpe said. “Getting fourth in the state as a freshman and sophomore team is a pretty big accomplishment. I think just being able to get to the last day of the state tournament and being in the main draw is really an accomplishment.”

I’m pretty happy with how we finished this weekend. Getting fourth in the state as a freshman and sophomore team is a pretty big accomplishment. I think just being able to get to the last day of the state tournament and being in the main draw is really an accomplishment.

Edwardsville freshman tennis player Zach Trimpe

Trimpe said he and Gray “lost control” of the first set against Aizenberg and Lew.

“We weren’t getting to the net like we did at the beginning of the first set,” he said. “We stopped going to the net and started letting Highland Park get to the net. You have to be playing your best game at state because your opponents are so good.

“But I think Alex and I played well this weekend. We can both build off this. It’s big tournament experience and it shows us how we can improve our game and our play over the summer and next year. We’re looking forward (to next season) because we’re both going to be better.”

Lipe said the loss to Casati and Wasilewicz, who wound up placing second, was closer than the scores indicated.

“It was very competitive, more competitive than the scores would indicate,” Lipe said. “But the team that beat us was awfully good.”

As a team, the Tigers finished tied for eighth with Stevenson with 20 points. Edwardsville has placed among the top 10 in the team standings in four of the last five years.

“It was a solid team effort,” Lipe said. “All six of our team members contributed at least one point, and obviously, we were led by Zach and Alex this weekend. Any time you finish in the top 10 at state, that’s a big deal. We were the highest finisher not from Chicago.”

New Trier won the team championship and was followed by Hinsdale Central, Deerfield, Highland Park, Neuqua Valley, Naperville Central and Glenbrook North.

David Wilhelm: 618-239-2665, @DavidMWilhelm

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