In what has become a normal occurrence, Floyd County teams spent another day dodging rain and looking for a clear window to get things done.
While most of the opening day of the Region 7-AA tennis tournament was completed Monday at the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College, matches between Coosa, Rockmart and Dade County will have to be completed today beginning at noon before the third-place and championship matches.
Weather permitting the tournament could start as early as 10 a.m., but if the matches can’t be started as late as 3 p.m., the event will pick up Wednesday at 9:30 a.m.
All the teams that made it to the semifinal round are guaranteed a spot in the GHSA Class AA state playoffs, which are scheduled to start next week and end May 4 with the state championship matches for all classifications at the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College.
The No. 5-seeded Eagles punched their ticket to state with a first-round win against No. 4 Armuchee, winning 3-2. The deciding match came down to No. 2 doubles between Coosa’s Malachi Wilkins and Keith Gunnells and Armuchee’s Ethan Hoover and David Lovett.
The Coosa duo dropped the first set 6-7, but cruised through the next two 6-1, 6-1 to send the Eagles to the semifinals and the state championships.
“We just have to be able to play our best tennis on the region tournament day, and I think we did that,” Coosa coach Granger Surrett said. “Even at the spots we lost … playing our best tennis right now is what we needed and these guys delivered.”
Granger said he was glad to see the seniors on his team get one more shot at playing for state.
“With all the seniors we have, they dug deep today and played their best tennis, and that’s what we’ve been saying for the last couple of weeks,” Surrett said. “It was awesome seeing seniors with their backs against the wall — ‘Hey win this or you’re playing your last high school match.’ It doesn’t get any better than that.”
The No. 2-seeded Model boys’ team swept its opponents in 5-0 shutouts topping No. 7 Pepperell in the opening round and No. 3 seed Gordon Central in the semifinals.
Still perfect in his high school career, Parker Stone led the way winning at No. 1 singles 6-0, 6-0 against Pepperell and 6-1, 6-3 against the Warriors. Model will face the winner of the Coosa-Rockmart matchup as the Blue Devils will try for their third straight region title.
The boys’ third-place match will see Gordon Central facing either Rockmart or Coosa.
The only other teams to complete semifinal play Monday were the Armuchee and Model girls with the Lady Indians coming away with a 3-1 victory, sending the team to the finals against either No. 1 Rockmart or No. 4 Dade County. Model will face the loser of that matchup in the third-place match.
The Rockmart girls’ team, which is also in the hunt for its third straight region title, already has two of the three matches it needs to win against Dade County.
Because of the weather delays, once a team reaches three wins the match will conclude.
SATURDAY’S LATE CONTEST GOLF: Darlington takes 11th
The Darlington boys’ golf team finished 11th out of 26 teams in the Hardaway Invitational at Bull Creek Golf Course in Columbus.
The Tigers shot a first round of 309 followed by a second-round score of 315.
For Darlington, Lindsey Cordell shot a 74-73, followed by Scott Spyra’s 74-78, Carter Anderson’s 79-79 and Hank Crawford’s 82-85.
Defending Alabama Class 7A champions Mountain Brook won the overall tournament title with a 4-under 572.
Darlington will next compete in the Carrollton Invitational on Thursday.