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Tigers get home reward for district win
The Central boys will host today's regional match against Eureka.
Central's boys tennis district win on Friday gave the Tigers their first berth in the state playoffs since 2002 and earned the Tigers a home dual with Eureka today in the regional playoffs.
Under the new tennis playoff format, the top four teams from each district advance to the regional round. The district winner faces the No. 4 team in the district, and the No. 2 team plays the No. 3 team. Central and Eureka will begin at 3:30 p.m. today with doubles play.
"We didn't expect this," Central coach Bud Craven said of the title. "Every time I've gotten first or second I've had to go to St. Louis. This is kind of nice [to be at home]."
If the Tigers win today, they will host the winner of the regional between DeSmet and Chaminade on Saturday. The Tigers own a 6-3 win against Eureka earlier this year.
The Tigers were able to capture the district title thanks to a doubles runner-up finish from David Berry and Patrick Duffy, paired with fourth-place finishes from the doubles team of Brandon Gonzales and Josh Hubbard and Robert Weir in singles. Berry and Duffy qualified for the state tournament with their runner-up finish.
"I'm really proud of that second [doubles] team," Craven said. "They played the best they have played all year. They really got in a zone over the two days. That's really what helped get us here."
Central, which features a young squad, will feature its regular dual lineup today against Eureka. Berry, Duffy, Weir, Will LaFoe, Hubbard and Gonzales will compete in singles, and the doubles teams will consist of Berry-Duffy, Weir-LaFoe and Hubbard-Gonzales.