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Blue Devils put a dent into Bulldogs’ playoff hopes

Posted: April 11, 2014 1:51 p.m.
Updated: April 14, 2014 5:00 a.m.

Of all his team’s losses this season, Camden High tennis coach Roger Smoak said this one stung the most.
After falling to Dreher, 4-3, in Columbia earlier this season, the Bulldogs saw the door to their AAA state playoffs hopes close a bit more as Dreher left the CHS courts with a 4-2 win on Thursday.
The defeat dropped the Bulldogs to 6-7 overall and 1-7 in Region 4-AAA play.
“This was probably the most disappointing loss of our season, especially since it’s the last match before spring vacation and we’ll have a long time to think about it,” Smoak said. “Plus, it came at home and we take pride in playing and winning on our home courts.”
Camden collected its two wins in first and second singles. Nelson Semple was extended to a third set tie-breaker at first singles before getting past Evan Hamner, 3-6, 6-4, 11-9. Ben Goodrich then did likewise in downing Nathan Hahn at second singles, 6-1, 7-6 (7-5).
“Nelson had to make a comeback, as usual,” Smoak said. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen anybody play as many three-set matches as Nelson has this year.
“I thought Ben played a real good match. He lost to that guy the last time we played them.”
The Blue Devils avoided by going a first double tie-breaker by winning the rest of the singles and second doubles pairings. In third singles, Dreher’s Reed Sheppstrom handed Camden’s Thomas deLoach a 6-1, 6-4 loss at third singles before Daniel Brown stopped Thomas Marshall in straight sets, 6-3, 6-2, in fourth singles. Ryan Mann then dealt Wilson Pope a 6-4, 6-1 setback in fifth singles.
Dreher’s Zach Rue and Will Walker defeated Robert Lackey and K.P. Cassidy, 4-6, 6-2, 13-11, in second doubles.
“Our motto this year has been to get better and I felt that we were getting better,” Smoak said. “Our bottom guys weren’t able to come through for us but I was proud of the effort that they all gave.”


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