Area Players Determine CAC Championships

By John Packett, RTA Contributing Writer

Area Players Determine CAC Championships

Several local players had a big hand in deciding the men’s and women’s Capital Athletic Association tournament championships.
Justin Cerny, a junior out of Trinity Episcopal, supplied two of the crucial points Christopher Newport used to upset Mary Washington 5-3 on April 22 in Fredericksburg. Cerny picked up wins at No. 2 singles and No. 1 doubles (with David Reed).

The clinching point also involved a Richmonder. UMW freshman Joseph Brown (Douglas Freeman) lost to CNU’s Dominic Lacombe in a three-setter to wrap it up for the Captains.

Dillon Sykes, a junior out of Cosby, played in a number of matches but didn’t take part in the final for CNU.

It was CNU’s first title as a member of the CAC and marked the end of Mary Washington’s 17-year reign as the top dog in the conference. The Captains will return to the Division III NCAA tournament for the first time since 2008.

Despite the loss, UMW (17-8) is expected to receive an at-large NCAA bid. CNU is 14-9.

On the women’s side of the CAC equation, the reverse took place as two Richmonders led UMW to a 5-1 decision over CNU in the title match.

Former Deep Run High standout Caroline Mosberg notched victories at No. 3 doubles and No. 4 singles to put the Eagles in position for freshman Rachel Summers (James River High) to score the decisive point at No. 3 singles.

Summers, who now lives in Arlington, didn’t waste any time, dispatching Kate Huck 6-1, 6-2.

The 15th-ranked Eagles (19-5) earned an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament later in May. It was their 14th consecutive CAC championship.

Meanwhile, the Randolph-Macon College women will play host to the Old Dominion Athletic Conference tournament May 6-7 at the Banks Tennis Center in Ashland. The Yellow Jackets, who have a pair of locals in the starting lineup, are 16-2 going into the semifinals.

Melissa Tomlin (Prince George) handles the No. 3 singles spot and Toni McDonald (Varina) takes care of No. 6. In doubles, McDonald shares the top position and Tomlin is part of No. 2. That means the two seniors could have a hand in four points.

The ODAC men’s tournament will also be at R-MC but the Yellow Jackets won’t be part of it after their 5-0 loss to Hampden-Sydney in the quarterfinals on Tuesday.

The men’s team, which featured a significant local contingent, finished with an 8-8 record. Baxter Carter (St. Christopher’s) played No. 1 singles for the Yellow Jackets, Grant Sarver (Mills Godwin) was No. 2 while No. 5 Shane Berry (James River) and No. 6 Jack Aprahamian (Trinity Episcopal) helped fill out the lineup. All should return in 2018.

Shenandoah’s women completed their season with a 7-2 victory over Virginia Wesleyan on April 29, and Morgan Fuqua, a freshman from Mills Godwin, did her part with a pair of victories at No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles. The Hornets were 4-11.

The James Madison men’s team finished its season at 14-9 after losing in the quarterfinals of the Colonial Athletic Association tournament. Freshman Paul Mendoza (Cosby) played No. 2 singles and No. 1 doubles for the Dukes while former Richmonder Tate Steinour was at No. 5 singles.

Former Collegiate standout Andrew Reed wrapped up his sophomore season at Lafayette College when the Leopards lost to Army in the quarterfinals of the Patriot League tournament on April 29. Reed played No. 3 singles and No. 1 doubles for Lafayette (7-16).