Jack VonDielingen and Joe Schmidt were just mere points away from reaching the IHSAA state finals in the individual doubles bracket.
After getting to the regional at Bedford North Lawrence, the duo played against Evansville North’s Gabe Wilke and William Cusic. They dropped the first set 2-6 but then rallied to win the second set 7-5 to force a deciding third set.
VonDielingen and Schmidt fell just short in the third set 5-7, but it was just the second loss they suffered all season long.
After going an impressive 24-2 this fall and having a deep postseason run, VonDielingen and Schmidt have been named The Tribune’s Co-Boys Tennis Players of the Year.
“Jack and Joe were great together, a large part as to why our team did so well this year,” Seymour head coach Brandon Davis said. “They played to each other’s strengths and weaknesses well, and they never criticized each other.”
When Davis decided to pair VonDielingen and Schmidt together at No. 1 doubles before the season started, he had a feeling they would work well together, but he never imagined it would be as good as it was.
The two complemented one another well on the court. Schmidt had smooth ground strokes and could rally back-and-forth with anybody, and VonDielingen’s presence at the net would often flip the momentum of a match.
“Jack is very excited about every point, whether it’s good or bad, and Joe is calm, cool and collected,” Davis said. “They feed to each other well. Joe has great ground strokes, and then Jack is there at the net ready to punch it back at them.”
Their success at doubles also helped Seymour as a team. The Owls finished 19-4 overall, finished runner-up in the Hoosier Hills Conference and won the sectional championship for the first time since 2019.
At Seymour’s end-of-season awards banquet, VonDielingen and Schmidt were named co-most valuable players.
They also were all-Hoosier Hills Conference first team, all-district and all-state honorable mention.
This was the second straight season where VonDielingen advanced into the postseason at No. 1 doubles. He did it his junior season with Eli Meyer, and then he teamed with Schmidt his senior season to almost reach the state finals.
VonDielingen will turn his focus to the spring, where he gets set for his senior baseball season. He hopes to play baseball in college.
As for Schmidt, he will be back for his senior year next fall on the tennis courts, where Davis expects big things from him, whether it’s at singles or doubles.
Remaining members of the All-County tennis team:
Eli Meyer (Sr.), Seymour: One singles, all-HHC, all-district, all-state honorable mention, regional qualifier.
Hunter Heckman (Sr.), Seymour: Two singles, all-HHC honorable mention, regional qualifier.
Pierson Wheeler (So.), Brownstown Central: Two singles, 16-1 overall record, all-Mid-Southern Conference, team most valuable player.
Reuben Kruse (Sr.), Seymour: Three singles, all-HHC honorable mention, regional qualifier.
Lane Steward (So.), Brownstown Central: Three singles, 13-3 overall record, all-MSC honorable mention, team most improved player.
Nathan Voelker (Sr.), Trinity Lutheran: One singles, one doubles, 15-6 overall record, team MVP.
Connor Gwin (Sr.), Brownstown Central: Two doubles, regional qualifier.
Bryce Reaser (Sr.), Brownstown Central: Two doubles, regional qualifier.
Parker Thompson (So.), Seymour: Two doubles, regional qualifier.
Drew Handloser (Jr.), Seymour: Two doubles, regional qualifier.
Jack Stuckwisch (Fr.), Trinity Lutheran: Two singles, 12-9 overall record.
Smith Hackman (So.), Brownstown Central: One singles, 6-16 overall record, all-MSC.
Trevor Alberring (Sr.), Seymour: Two doubles.
Will Gausmann (S0.), Trinity Lutheran: Two doubles, team most improved player.