Owls drop HHC opener

Seymour’s Adam Berry played to his strength during Monday’s tennis match against New Albany’s Nolan Keeler in the first round of the Hoosier Hills Conference Tournament.

That style for Berry was to outlast Keeler and the result was a 5-7, 6-4, 10-5 win at No. 2 singles for the Owls’ junior.

Berry’s teammates couldn’t come up with enough winners and the Owls lost 4-1 on senior night as Seymour senior Ty McCory was honored before the match.

Owls coach Brad Emerson said Berry played a smart match.

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“Adam played a good match,” he said. “They’ve played five times in their career and the other guy had bested Adam the first four. They’ve had closes matches, so I think Adam was due this time.

“Adam frustrates people just getting the ball back. He just kept moving the kid around, and I think the kid started getting a little tired, and when you get tired in tennis your legs go and then your shots aren’t the same so I think Adam just did a good job of keeping the ball in play and frustrating the kid.”

Emerson said the Bulldogs had some big, strong players who hit the ball hard.

“They’re pretty strong. They’ve got some big boys there in all those positions, and they’ve got good serves and decent ground strokes. They’ve got some good athletes, and they’ve got some good skills in tennis, big serves primarily.

“I thought we competed pretty well tonight, especially at No. 2 singles and No. 3 singles, and I saw improvement at our doubles, No. 1 doubles especially. They played a lot more competitive in that second set.”

New Albany’s Logan Conrad was a 6-0, 6-0 winner over McCory at No. 1 singles, and Bulldog Ethan Holder topped Isaac Hardin 6-2, 6-3 at No. 3 singles.

New Albany’s Ryan Robinson and Thomas Ogden defeated Will Rinehart and Sam Schmidt 6-2, 6-2 at No. 1 doubles, and Cody Medley and Ben Stock won 6-0, 6-0 over Pablo Jimenez and Brandon Hubbard at No. 2 doubles.

“When you get opportunities against good teams, you’ve got to try to take advantage and I just don’t think we did that,” Emerson said. “They missed some shots and when that happens you’ve got to kind of sneak through that window. It’s a small window but you’ve still got to try to sneak through and we just didn’t do that.”

The Owls (6-5) will play host to Waldron today, and will travel to Madison Wednesday for a loser’s bracket match in the HHC tournament.

They will be home to Shelbyville on Thursday for a rescheduled match and will be home Friday for another HHC tournament match.