Tuesday, February 20, 2018
Sports

Times' all-North Suncoast tennis teams

Boys

Player of the year: Agie Moreno, So., Wiregrass Ranch

Why we picked him: There is no question Moreno is the best high school tennis player on the North Suncoast. He was everything you could want in a No. 1 singles player. Moreno never lost, and when things got tough at the Class 3A state tournament, he bore down and led the Bulls to the school's first state championship. A day after that, he became the first public school player in Pasco County history to win an individual championship when he beat Fort Myers' John Carlin 6-1, 4-6, 10-3.

Future plans: Moreno still has two years of high school remaining, and if he continues to play, more titles await. He is also drawing serious attention from colleges like Duke, Florida, Georgia, Pepperdine and Virginia.

Did you know? Moreno is a player of some international repute, so he has managed to balance his school work with playing all over the world — the week before he won regionals, he missed districts because he was at a tournament in Peru — and still competing for the Bulls. Since January, Moreno has competed in national and international events against players from Barbados, Canada, Hong Kong, Mexico, Colombia and Costa Rica.

Coach of the year

Dave Wilson, Wiregrass Ranch. After some hopeful past seasons, Wilson got his state title this year and may have a dynasty on his hands. There are no seniors among his top five singles players.

First team

Pedro Fernandez, So., Wiregrass Ranch: The Bulls' ace at No. 2 singles won all of his matches, including a 6-2, 6-3 victory at state.

Foresight Okungbowa, Jr., Wiregrass Ranch: A singles and doubles finalist at state, Okungbowa stepped successfully into a bigger role this season.

Alejandro Feliciano, Jr., Wiregrass Ranch: Feliciano won a state championship at No. 4 singles with a 6-2, 6-1 victory.

Sebastian Castillo, So., Wiregrass Ranch: It's rare that a No. 5 singles player makes first team, but it's also rare to see a No. 5 win every match but one 6-0, 6-0.

Patrick Deslaurier, Jr., Springstead: The No. 1 singles player helped lead the Eagles to their first district and region titles in more than 30 years.

Second team

Daniel Lukish, So., Mitchell

Jesse DeWitt, Jr., Nature Coast

Josh Morris, Jr., Pasco

Alex Hoover, Fr., Springstead

Hank Deslaurier, Sr. Springstead

Honorable mention

Anclote: Dante Clark

Fivay: Derek Balazy

Gulf: Alex Walker, Aakash Panjabi

Hudson: Chris Mull

Land O'Lakes: Chris Mo, David Dollbaum, Albert Xing

Mitchell: Zach Hovsepian

Nature Coast: Alec Lund, Conner Schwefringhaus

Pasco: Alex Mitchell; Christian Yann

Ridgewood: Sean Hoyt

River Ridge: Dylan Lutz

Sunlake: Derek Walters

Wesley Chapel: Ethan Taylor

Zephyrhills: Thad Anderton

Girls

Player of the year: Grace Curren, So., Hernando

Why we picked her: Curren was dominant on the North Suncoast this year at No. 1 singles, not dropping a single local match and advancing to the Class 2A state tournament. Her only regular-season loss was to Madison Gamble at Lecanto early in the season, and she didn't lose again until being eliminated in the state tournament by Jordan Zander of St. Augustine Menendez.

Future plans: Curren still has two years remaining at Hernando, and the Leopards will be better off as a result. First-year Hernando coach Connie Foster said Curren brings her ball machine to practice and spends a lot of her practice time working one-on-one with the other players who need help.

Did you know? Curren was also able to avenge her 2013 district final loss to Pasco's Mady Johnson, handing the Pirate senior three of her five losses. Johnson was the only player to give Curren a match, but the sophomore prevailed 7-5, 6-2 during the season, 6-4, 7-5 at districts and 6-4, 5-7, 6-2 at regionals. "That was really important for Grace," Foster said. "They are our rival and to overcome her was big."

Coach of the year

Don Charlick, Pasco. Charlick has turned the Pirates program into a regular winner, and this year guided the Pirates to their first state tournament.

First team

Mady Johnson, Sr., Pasco: Pirates' No. 1 player was 17-5 and led her team to a spot in the Class 2A state tournament.

Cheyenne Lilienthal, Fr., Academy at the Lakes: The state-ranked freshman beat Tampa Prep's Paige Leavy 3-6, 6-2, 10-5 in the Class A, District 7 final to qualify for state.

Sierra Yanez, Sr., Anclote: Yanez went from being a No. 4 player in 2012 to going to the 2A state tourney in 2014.

Brianna Miah, Sr., Wiregrass Ranch: Bulls' top singles player teamed up with Tiffany Garner to make the Class 3A state tournament in doubles.

Kavya Avancha, Jr., Land O'Lakes: The Class 3A-9 district champion at No. 1 singles was also a state qualifier for the Gators.

Second team

Tiffany Garner, Jr., Wiregrass Ranch

Precious Okungbowa, Fr., Wiregrass Ranch

Nicole Gonzalez, Jr., Anclote

Shelbie Timlake, Jr., Pasco

Robyn Cotney, Sr., Springstead

Honorable mention

Fivay: Amber Mariano

Gulf: Camille Phillips

Hernando: Jada Bergstrom

Hudson: Dominique Cirnigliaro, Marisa Maksymkow

Land O'Lakes: Deneen Wang

Mitchell: Olivia Batshon

Nature Coast: Katie Viola

Pasco: Amanda Dee, Sara Slayton

Ridgewood: Desiree Marcum

River Ridge: Keegan McQuillan

Sunlake: Raquel Julian, Jackie Simpson

Wesley Chapel: Allison Kosloski

Zephyrhills: Sophia Geddes

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