In a battle of unbeatens Thursday, River Hill wasted little time setting the tone and settling its nerves.
The Hawks jumped all over host Howard in the early singles matches, creating momentum that they never lost the rest of the day en route to a 5-0 victory for the boys and a 4-1 win for the girls. For River Hill’s No. 1 boys singles player Alex Artazov, who went on to earn an 8-0 win, he took his job going out first very seriously.
“I always try to come out and have fun, but today I was definitely most concerned about the result. I made sure I never lost focus throughout the whole match,” Artazov said. “I feel like there was a mindset for the whole team coming in because of their record, and I really wanted to show how confident I was right from the start.
“I would say that I’m normally a bit fiery, but today was probably even a bit more than usual.”
Artazov, a sophomore, is now 5-0 at singles this spring, dropping only three games in those matches.
Joining Artazov in terms of dominating efforts were the Hawks’ No. 1 and 2 girls singles combination of freshman Adelaide Houston and junior Defne Demirekler, who each took less than 30 minutes to secure 8-0 sweeps of their own.
Houston said she gained confidence in warmups and it carried over.
“You can usually tell in the warm up how the match is going to be in terms of how the opponent serves or spins, and I think after that today I was more confident in myself,” Houston said. “I was able to loosen up and get off to a strong start because I felt good.”
As the day wore on, the matches tightened across the board. But the prevailing theme was that the Hawks answered in the face of adversity more times than not. River Hill coach Kelley Pfefferkorn said she thought having an early cushion allowed her players to play a bit looser.
“As the matches start coming off with wins, it’s huge to be able to go over to those just starting and say that we are in good shape. Suddenly that pressure that they might have been feeling goes away and they don’t feel so tight anymore,” she said. “I definitely think there were a bit more nerves than usual because they all knew the records, so anything that makes them go away quicker is obviously important.”
For the boys, River Hill (7-0) also got tight wins from Aaron Zhao at No. 2 singles (9-8, 10-4), Zach Lee and Ibrahim Khan at No. 1 doubles (8-6) and Jalen Geason and Dhruv Gupta at No. 3 doubles (9-7) to go along with a convincing victory from the No. 2 doubles pair of Jai Khanna and Aaron Liebskind (8-1).
Zhao’s match against Howard’s Niko Bifsas was one of the most thrilling of the day, as he battled back from a 4-1 deficit to force the tie break and eventually prevail. It was even more impressive considering he was a late substitution into the lineup.
“He had to dig himself out a little bit after going down early, but I had total confidence in him,” Pfefferkorn said. “It’s a great example of our depth, and I think it goes back to the preparation we do going all the way back to tryouts of figuring out which players are best in what spots. Even in situations like today, where we have to make a change at the last minute, I feel like we are able to put ourselves in position to still be successful.”
In addition to the victories at singles, the River Hill girls (7-0) also got wins at No. 2 doubles from Riya Patel and Elinor Tu (8-6) and No. 3 doubles from Rebecca Ni and Ella Jiao (9-7).
The lone win of the day for Howard’s girls (6-1) came from its top doubles team of Corinne Chau and Viola Yu (8-6).
Howard coach Charles Boling said that against good teams like River Hill, the margin for error is razor thin.
“There were a lot of games that were going to deuce, so they could have gone either way. But I have to give River Hill credit because they seemed to really put away those shots in the big moments,” he said. “We threw the sink at them today, but River Hill pulled it out almost every time.”
River Hill is back in action on Monday against Wilde Lake, while Howard will face off against Marriotts Ridge.
River Hill 5, Howard 0
No. 1 singles: Alex Artazov, RH def. Andrew Au, Ho (8-0)
No. 2 singles: Aaron Zhao, RH def. Niko Bifsas, Ho (9-8, 10-4)
No. 1 doubles: Zach Lee and Ibrahim Khan, RH def. Richie Pemberton and Alex Brousseau, Ho (8-6)
No. 2 doubles: Jai Khanna and Aaron Liebskind, RH def. Tyson Nguyen and Savvas Bifsas, Ho (8-1)
No. 3 doubles: Jalen Geason and Dhruv Gupta, RH def. Charlie Veihmeyer and Jeff Harvey, Ho (9-7)
River Hill 4, Howard 1
No. 1 singles: Adelaide Houston, RH def. Varsha Kantheli, Ho (8-0)
No. 2 singles: Defne Demirekler, RH def. Akshito Govindoramen, Ho (8-0)
No. 1 doubles: Corinne Chau and Viola Yu, Ho def. Siri Jale and Priyanka Vamulu, RH (8-6)
No. 2 doubles: Riya Patel and Elinor Tu, RH def. Presley Caroland and Marina Kim, Ho (8-6)
No. 3 doubles: Rebecca Ni and Ella Jiao, RH def. Amelia Krieg and Shannon Clifford, Ho (9-7)
OTHER TENNIS SCORES:
Marriotts Ridge 5, Oakland Mills 0
No. 1 singles: Pedro Arantes Gabriel, MR def. Luke Carlson, OM (8-1)
No. 2 singles: Shreyas Rath, MR def. Naod Asres, OM (8-2)
No. 1 doubles: Ethan Bernstein and Colin Wang, MR def. Jaeden Henry and Joel Pazin, OM (8-3)
No. 2 doubles: Rafa Feldman and Arnav Srivastava, MR def. Brayden Awukum and Matthew Prempeh, OM (8-1)
No. 3 doubles: Aaryan Jadhav and Hamin Kim, MR def. Ethan Neylan and Allen Simon, OM (8-5)
Centennial 5, Glenelg 0
No. 1 singles: Vijay Jagarapu, C def. Lukas Zukalskis, G (8-4)
No. 2 singles: Michael He, C def. Daniel Danko, G (8-4)
No. 1 doubles: Ryan Huang and Keshav Ganapathy, C def. Caleb Taylor and John Masterman, G (8-0)
No. 2 doubles: Tyler H. Lin and Julian Whang, C def. Mitchell Steinberg and Jack Fitzgibbons, G (8-3)
No. 3 doubles: Charlie Lu and Hari Meka, C def. Will Sloan and Kaushal Jatti, G (8-2)
Mt. Hebron 4, Atholton 1
No. 1 singles: Guy Scafidi, MH def. Alex Nguyen, A (8-3)
No. 2 singles: Jeff Li, MH def. Jason Lilly, A (8-3)
No. 1 doubles: Mason Doan and Andrew Lee, MH def. Daniel Etcheberrigarary and Nico Taber, A (8-5)
No. 2 doubles: David Szympruch and Steven Tzeng, A def. Sion Matthew and Jack Lovas, MH (8-5)
No. 3 doubles: Sumant Melta and Nandhu Pillai, MH def. Paul Kim and Nithish S., A (8-1)
Wilde Lake 3, Hammond 2
No. 1 singles: Hughes Charles, WL def. Austin Uwimana, Ha (8-5)
No. 2 singles: Maddox Ciesiuk, WL def. Colin Ward, Ha (8-2)
No. 1 doubles: Tyler Prudhomme and Hussain Masood, Ha def. Des Adeyemi and Dan Asgedom, WL (8-4)
No. 2 doubles: Noah Begley and Matthew Batemonkh, WL def. Huy Tran and Brandon Nguyen, Ha (8-3)
No. 3 doubles: Sohan Modi and Holden Rushing, Ha def. Jonathan Mohave and Darius Lewis, WL (8-4)
Reservoir 4, Long Reach 1
No. 1 singles: Joshua Cai, Re def. Praise Apanisile, LR (8-0)
No. 2 singles: Clark Anglin, Re def. Joel Pollack, LR (8-5)
No. 1 doubles: Uik Battalapalli, and Yari Armond, Re def. Ben Greenberg and Josh Eom, LR (8-6)
No. 2 doubles: Chris Lopez and Chris Shin, LR def. Jason Kong and Sean Kim, Re (8-3)
No. 3 doubles: Edwin Brown and Jared Carino, Re (win by forfeit)
Howard 5, Reservoir 0 (Wednesday)
No. 1 singles: Andrew Au, Ho def. Josh Choi, Re (8-2)
No. 2 singles: Niko Bifsas, Ho def. Vikram Battalapalli, Re (8-1)
No. 1 doubles: Alex Brousseau and Richie Pemberton, Ho def. Yari Armand and Edwin Brown, Re (8-6)
No. 2 doubles: Jared Carino and Haider Hussain, Re def. Savsas Bifsas and Niko Bifsas, Ho (8-6)
No. 3 doubles: Charlie Veihmeyer and Jeff Harvey, Ho def. Avneesh Sokhey and Harshil Shah, Re (8-3)
Centennial 4, Atholton 1 (Wednesday)
No. 1 singles: Vijay Jagarapu, C def. Daniel Etcheberrigarary, A (8-0)
No. 2 singles: Jason Lilly, A def. Michael He, C (8-5)
No. 1 doubles: Danny Ho and Ryan Huang, C def. David Szympruch and Steven Tzeng, A (8-3)
No. 2 doubles: Keshav Ganapathy and Tyler H. Lin, C ded. Nicholas Taber and Paul Kim, A (8-3)
No. 3 doubles: Hari Meka and Charlie Lu, C def. Anthony Zhou and Gabriel Schauf, A (8-0)
Marriotts Ridge 4, Oakland Mills 1
No. 1 singles: Charita Sandoze, MR def. Gabriella Kerechanin, OM (8-2)
No. 2 singles: Hashini Amarasinghe, MR (win by forfeit)
No. 1 doubles: Samantha Mosley and Erinn Kaiser, OM def. Srinidhi Arumugam and Amrutha Alibili, MR (8-5)
No. 2 doubles: Vinita Badugu and Rishika Bandi, MR def. Margaret Kato and Estella Brummell, OM (8-6)
No. 3 doubles: Leah Liu and Anika Herath, MR (win by forfeit)
Centennial 5, Glenelg 0
No. 1 singles: Rose Huang, C def. Ava Stamatakis, G (8-1)
No. 2 singles: Michelle Fradlin, C def. Rukmini Gaddam, G (8-1)
No. 1 doubles: Shreya Vallimanalan and Audrey Oaksmith, C def. Ally Abruscato and Kousalya Gaddam, G (8-5)
No. 2 doubles: Sarika Kapadia and Joanna Blackman, C def. Arianna Modeli and Kate Kim, G (8-2)
No. 3 doubles: Shriya Reddy and Sarah Blackman, C def. Ashley Kim and Kristin Ruehl, G (8-4)
Mt. Hebron 4, Atholton 1
No. 1 singles: Trinetra Vijayakumar def. Jessica Zhou, A (8-1)
No. 2 singles: Niki Patel, A def. Shrinshi Abaddi, MH (8-6)
No. 1 doubles: Julia Kimack and Shavani Varia, MH def. Rissah Remy and Talia Brown, A (8-0)
No. 2 doubles: Harini Devireddy and Mira Tadimalla, MH def. Jen Chiang and Alisa Hira, A (8-4)
No. 3 doubles: Sophie Kreyling and Bonnie Vess, MH def. Eulalia Voo and Michelle Kim, A (8-2)
Wilde Lake 4, Hammond 1
No. 1 singles: Sojona McLaughlin, WL def. Ronia Agyeman, Ha (8-3)
No. 2 singles: Kirstina Stausai, WL def. Megan Martin, Ha (8-0)
No. 1 doubles: Kate Kulesza and Johana Shin, WL def. Cingh Cing and Man Huai, Ha (8-1)
No. 2 doubles: Olivia Ametewee and Mayuri Chakkara, Ha def. Sage Richards and Madison Hays, WL (9-7)
No. 3 doubles: Wilde Lake win by forfeit.
Reservoir 5, Long Reach 0
No. 1 singles: Alanna Ro, Re def. Madison Lee, LR (8-2)
No. 2 singles: Gia Santos, Re def. Sanye Thorne, LR (8-0)
No. 1 doubles: Alyssa Lee and Kaylo Ou, Re def. Preethi Narayanan and A. Yeffsa, LR (8-2)
No. 2 doubles: Lexi Lee and Karen Yhim, Re def. Brianna Burfield and Zion Par, LR (8-0)
No. 3 doubles: Sripriya Vemu and Kaitlyn Ro, Re def. Skylar Owens and Kaitlin Johnson, LR (8-0)
Howard 3, Reservoir 2 (Wednesday)
No. 1 singles: Alanna Ro, Re def. Varsha Kantheli, Ho (8-1)
No. 2 singles: Grace Tao, Re def. Medha Hegde, Ho (8-1)
No. 1 doubles: Corrine Chau and Viola Yu, Ho def. Kayla Ou and Alyssa Lee, Re (8-1)
No. 2 doubles: Presley Caroland and Marina Kim, Ho def. Karen Yhim and Lexi Lee, Re (8-0)
No. 3 doubles: Shannon Clifford and Amelia Kreig, Ho def. Kaitlyn Ro and Gia Santos, Re (8-3)
Centennial 4, Atholton 1 (Wednesday)
No. 1 singles: Rose Huang, C def. Jessica Zhou, A (8-1)
No. 2 singles: Michelle Fradlin, C def. Rissah Remy, A (8-1)
No. 1 doubles: Alexandra Nguyen and Nikita Patel, A def. Shreya Vallimanalan and Audrey Oaksmith, C (9-8, 13-11)
No. 2 doubles: Sarika Kapadia and Shriya Reddy, C def. Jennifer Chang and Alisa Hira, A (8-2)
No. 3 doubles: Sarah Blackman and Joanna Blackman, C def. Talia Brown and Eulalia Voo, A (8-0)
Centennial 3, Glenelg 0
The win is the Eagles’ fourth straight shutout. Freshman pitcher Cadeyrn Ahearn was superb in the win, striking out 11 in the complete game against Glenelg (4-3). He allowed only four hits and started off 19 batters with a first-pitch strike in his 81-pitch shutout.
The successful start is the second straight for the youngster, as last week Ahearn punched out nine in a five-inning victory in the Eagles’ 2-0 win over Mt. Hebron. On Monday, Conarie Steinbach tossed a shutout in a 7-0 win over Marriotts Ridge, while on Tuesday Drew Buckmaster didn’t allow a run in Centennial’s 14-0 win over Hammond.
At the plate, Centennial (6-1) scored three runs in the sixth inning. Drew Buckmaster ripped a double down the third-base line to drive home two runs, then Charlie Schmitt’s infield single scored another.
“We are just playing great team baseball,” said Centennial coach Denis Ahearn in an email. “[We are] putting together clean games with limited walks and errors. Our plate approaches are also getting better with each game, and the guys keep stepping up to get the big hit.”
....... 123 456 7 — R H E
G — 000 000 0 — 0 4 1
C — 000 003 0 — 3 5 0
River Hill 7, Howard 4
The Hawks scored four runs in the first two innings en route to their fifth straight victory. Brother Eje and Ehi Okojie led River Hill (6-1) on offense, combining for five hits. Daniel Kim paced Howard (4-2) with two hits at the plate. Tyler Della Noce and Michael Flaim both had solid outings for the Hawks, tossing 3 2/3 and three innings, respectively. The Hawks have easily the best run differential in the county, as Wes McCoy’s squad has outscored its opponents 64-17 this season.
Ho — 100 001 2 — 4 9 3
RH — 220 201 x — 7 11 2
Long Reach 13, Reservoir 5
All nine players in the Lightning lineup registered a hit in the convincing win. Long Reach (3-4) tallied 16 hits overall, with Chris Stanford leading the way with a 4-for-5 day with a home run and a triple at the plate. Cole Bosley, Tucker Freer, Brandon Bartolotta and Cole Fleischer all also contributed on offense with two hits apiece. Stanford had three RBIs, while Bosley, Bartolotta and Fleischer each drove home two runs. Bartolotta also earned the win on the mound, giving up only 5 hits in four innings.
Reservoir (3-3), meanwhile, was paced by Johnny Welch, Quinn Dean and Ben Davis, all of whom smacked two hits in the loss.
LR — 004 140 4 — 13 16 2
Re — 200 030 0 — 5 8 1
W: LR — B. Bartolotta; L: Re — Q. Dean; SV: LR — J. Tennant.
2B: LR — C. Bosley 2, B. Bartolotta, T. Freer, J. Tennant, C. Fleischer.
3B: LR — C. Stanford.
HR: LR — C. Stanford.
SB: LR — C. Bosley, C. Stanford.
Marriotts Ridge 9, Oakland Mills 2
Jordan Peguese was the star in the Mustangs’ win over the Scorpions (0-6). Peguese, a junior, earned the win after going five innings in his start and also went 2-for-4 with a triple, a walk, three runs, two RBIs and two stolen bases. On the mound, Peguese struck out nine and allowed only three hits and one run. With Oakland Mills in striking distance late in the game, Marriotts Ridge (4-3) extended its lead by scoring five runs in the sixth inning off singles from Peguese and Brandon Lake and a groundout by Macfarlane. Taking the loss was Cameron Canter, who allowed four hits and four runs while striking out eight in five solid innings. Kenny Quiles had an RBI groundout in the second, while Heath Franklin had an RBI double in the seventh for Oakland Mills.
MR — 101 205 0 — 9 9 1
OM — 010 000 1 — 2 4 1
W: MR — J. Peguese; L: OM — C. Canter.
2B: OM — H. Franklin.
3B: MR — J. Peguese.
SB: MR — S. Lincoln 2, B. Lake 2, J. Peguese 2, L. Anderson, D. Leader, B. Krupinsky; OM — Quilles, Pitts, A. Kell.
Atholton 9, Mt. Hebron 6
Hammond 14, Wilde Lake 12
The Golden Bears (2-5) scored nine runs in the top of the seventh inning to earn the comeback win over the Wildecats on the road. Eli Van Bemmel led the way by going 3-4 at the plate, driving in runs with a double in first inning and a single in the seventh. It was his hit in the final inning that plated the tying and go-ahead runs.
Wilde Lake had taken the lead in the second inning on a 2-RBI single by Xavier Gilliam (4-4). Then the Wildecats extended that cushion with five runs in the bottom of the sixth thanks to Gilliam, Alex Dobson and Andrew Wolters all driving in runs.
But Hammond rallied in the top half of the final inning to secure the win. Nicholas Wilk joined Van Bemmel with multiple hits on the day for Hammond.
Mt. Hebron 23, Atholton 5
Vikings shortstop Erin Behel didn’t feel much like getting out, going 4-for-4 with a triple and four RBIs to help lead her team to the mercy-rule victory. Mt. Hebron (5-2) didn’t waste any time taking the lead, scoring seven in the first, six in the second and seven in the third. Julie Watts, Emma Behel and Sarah Ginty all drove home three runs for Hebron. Emma Behel earned the win in the circle, allowing three earned runs and striking out 10 in five innings. For Atholton (0-7), Kyra Holtje almost hit for the cycle, going 3-for-3 at the plate with a single, a triple and a home run. She had four RBIs in the loss.
A — 004 01 — 5 4 3
MH — 767 3x — 23 16 2
W: MH — Emma Behel; L: A — Saylor.
2B: MH — Emma Behel 2, A. Wendt.
3B: MH — Erin Behel; A — K. Holtje.
HR: A — K. Holtje.
SB: MH — A. Sicoli 2, Erin Behel, J. Watts, A. Cheung, O. Bashura.
Reservoir 11, Long Reach 1
Four different Gators had multiple hits in the team’s mercy-rule win over the Lightning (1-6). Clare Andrews, Rhiannon Little, Courtney Johnson and Alyssa Kelly combined for eight hits, two triples, a home run and six RBIs. In the circle for Reservoir (7-0), Kylee Gunkel and Maggie Frisvold combined to strike out 12 batters in five innings, allowing only one hit and no walks.
LR — 001 00 — 1 1 4
Re — 442 1x — 11 10 1
Marriotts Ridge 21, Oakland Mills 0
Freshman Jasmine Smith threw a no-hitter to lead the Mustangs (5-2) past the Scorpions (0-6). Smith struck out 11 and walked three. At the plate, the youngster went 2-for-2 with two RBIs and a walk. Also leading the Mustangs offense, which tallied 17 hits in the win, was Bridget Farrell (3-for-3, two walks, four runs, two RBIs and a stolen base), Leah Chen (3-for-4, five RBIs and two runs), Ashleigh Gerber (2-for-2, a triple, three walks, three RBIs and two runs).
MR — 864 30 — 21 17 1
OM — 000 00 — 0 0 3
W: MR — J. Smith; L: OM — P. Andrews.
3B: MR — A. Gerber.
SB: MR — A. Theimer, B. Farrell.
Glenelg 26, Centennial 1
The Gladiators put up crooked numbers in all five innings of the mercy-rule win over the Eagles (1-6). Glenelg (5-2) smacked 24 hits in the win, including three apiece from Sage Huber, Jamie Shaw and Serafina Tinio. Reese Holden and Tinio both led the team with four RBIs apiece, while Huber and Tinio both slammed homers. Taylor Pence and Megan Ortwein led Glenelg in the circle, allowing only one run and three hits in five innings. Pence was credited as the winning pitcher. The win is Glenelg’s fourth straight after it opened the season 1-2.
G — 637 46 — 26 24 4
C — 000 10 — 1 3 2
2B: G — E. Piwowarski, S. Tinio.
3B: G — R. Holden.
HR: G — S. Tinio, S. Huber.
SB: G — J. Shaw 2, S. Tinio 2, A. Larson, L. Oaks, S. Spiegel, J. Woodling, A. Chapin; C — N/A.
Howard 8, River Hill 7
In a game in which both teams recorded 10-plus hits, the Lions (5-2) came out on top over the Hawks (4-3). The Hawks took a 6-2 lead through two innings, but the Lions roared back in the late innings to win the game. Howard scored four runs in the fifth and two more in the sixth to take the one-run lead. Katie Green earned the win in the circle for the Lions and had the game-winning hit at the plate when she singled home a run to break up the tied game. She punched out two in 5 1/3 innings. River Hill’s Sara Emig and Howard’s Erin Gorschboth led all players with three RBIs apiece, while Howard’s Kaitlyn Streets tallied four hits.
Ho — 020 042 0 — 8 16 4
RH — 330 010 0 — 7 11 4
W: Ho — K. Green; L: RH — L. Sheplee.
2B: Ho — M. Coleman; RH — E. Sheplee.
Wilde Lake 7, Hammond 4
Morgan Baird and Justyce Richard led the Wildecats (5-1) to the triumph over the Golden Bears (3-4). Baird smacked a home run and tallied three RBIs at the plate, while Richard tossed a complete game and struck out 10 to earn the win. Hammond, meanwhile, was led by Kasey Smith, who tossed six innings and drove home half of the Golden Bears’ runs. The Golden Bears tied the game at 4-4 in the top of the third, but the Wildecats responded immediately with three in the bottom half. Richard then didn’t allow a run the rest of the way for Wilde Lake.
Ha — 103 000 0 — 4 9 6
WL — 403 000 x — 7 6 1
W: WL — J. Richard; L: Ha — K. Smith.
HR: WL — M. Baird.
Reservoir 16, Hammond 3
The Gators improved to 4-1 with the win. Alex Ripkin and Kat Thayer combined to score nine goals against the Golden Bears (1-2).
Goals: Re — Ripkin 5, Thayer 4, Hill 2, Leak 2, Malwitz 2, Rowell; Ha — Wilson, Hughes, Osei.
Assists: Re — Hill 2, Gray 2, Malwitz, Rowell.
Saves: Re — Carranza 3, Roberts 6; Ha — Addo 4.