Monday’s sectional draw couldn’t have gone any worse for the Seymour boys tennis team.
Not only will the defending sectional winners have to win three games if they want to take home the crown, but they’ll first have to take on a tough Scottsburg team hoping to reclaim some postseason success.
The Warriors are the last team to win a sectional title other than Seymour, doing so in 2016. Seymour hosted Scottsburg very early in the season and came away with a convincing 5-0 win.
Owls’ coach Brad Emerson remarked earlier this season that Scottsburg always seemed to nip the Owls in their regular season tilt before they would return the favor in the postseason.
Maybe this time the roles are reversed?
I doubt it.
In four of the five matches, the Owls surrendered no more than three games to their Warrior counterparts. The only competitive match came at No. 3 singles that Braden Handloser still won 6-4, 7-6.
Should the Owls prove victorious, they’ll move on to face city rival Trinity Lutheran.
The two teams have not met yet this season and the Cougars will need to get off to a fast start if they want to have a shot at advancing to the sectional final.
And that’s something coach Bailey Baker has said doesn’t happen a lot.
Trinity Lutheran got off to one of their best starts against Indianapolis Lutheran, but hasn’t been able to recapture that magic since then.
The Cougars have quality seniors that could pull off an upset of either Seymour or Scottsburg, but they’ll need to bring their A-game for that to happen.
In the top half of the bracket, the Brownstown Central Braves will get a rematch with Mid-Southern Conference rival Austin in Thursday’s semifinal.
The Eagles topped the Braves, 3-2, on Monday in a highly-competitive match. Ethan Isaacs and Ethan Davis won their matches at Nos. 1 and 2 singles and, had some more points gone their way, could have pulled out a 4-1 win instead.
Two of the other three matches had a tiebreaker that bounced the Eagles’ way instead.
Braves’ coach Mitch Taylor has been wanting to see his kids play with confidence, get off to quick starts so they can play more freely. He’s seen that at times this year, especially early in the season, but has noted his team’s play has wobbled late in the season.
If the Braves play a similar match on Thursday, and the ball bounces in favor of the Braves, they’ll bounce right into a sectional final.