Prep boys' tennis: Viewmont downplays label as favorite
Viewmont junior Sam Tullis says you can throw the records out the window the perfect region mark, the Class 5A state title he won a year ago, all of it.
According to Tullis, none of the previous success matters because anything can happen when he and his Vikings teammates take the court Friday at Liberty Park.
"Everyone is good, and everyone works hard over the course of the year," said Tullis, who opens his title defense against Davis' C.J. Ercanbrach in No. 1 singles. "You have to go in like it's a clean slate.
"It's just a different atmosphere, with teammates and classmates there watching and cheering you on. It's nice when you have people there yelling at you, getting in your face and pushing you to do better."
The Vikings appear primed to end Brighton's seven-year stranglehold on the 5A trophy. Viewmont finished a close second last year, and the Vikings appear deeper and more talented this time around.
Between Tullis, brother Jacob at No. 2 singles and senior Nic LeBaron at No. 3 singles, the trio won 29 of 30 regular-season matches. The doubles teams of Ethan Hymas/Isaac Ford and Zach Beckstrand/Brandon Kasparian all seniors also finished the regular season unblemished.
If depth is the key to winning a championship, Viewmont's talented roster fits the bill.
"I don't know if we're more well-rounded [than last year]," Tullis said. "I just think it's going to be a matter of execution when the matches get tight."
Jacob Tullis, LeBaron and Hymas/Ford each were runners-up a year ago, and coach Mark Burningham believes that experience will be a factor this weekend.
"This year, you think about how close we were and you work toward that all year long," said Burningham, who led Viewmont to the 2002 state title. "You think about getting better and think about the state tournament. There's really a belief from the players that they can win."
If Viewmont is to end the Bengals' run, the singles semifinals could be the place to do it. Brighton's Cody Crandall (No. 1), Justin Mansell (No. 2) and Chase Stoner (No. 3) are all in the same half of the 16-player bracket as Viewmont's players.
But both Tullis and Burningham believe it's more than a two-team race for the title. Alta, Davis and West each have players in all five brackets.
"If we played Brighton head-to-head, it would be interesting to see what would happen," Burningham said. "But when you have a bracket and other teams and other strong players mixed in there from other schools, it's hard to say."
Class 2A will crown its champion Saturday at Liberty Park. Defending champion Manti graduated four of its five finalists from a season ago, but the Templars should push Rowland Hall, last year's runner-up.
State tennis tournaments
at Liberty Park
Friday and Saturday
No. 1 singles
• Cody Randall, Brighton vs. Garrett Rich, Bingham
• Colton McBride, Weber vs. Remi Prince, Taylorsville
• Sam Tullis, Viewmont vs. CJ Ercanbrach, Davis
• Hayden de Hoyos, Pleasant vs. Mikulus Thomas, Alta
• Cody Phonharath, Hunter vs. Jordan Slater, Fremont
• Brocton Andrus, Lone Peak vs. Mathias Choque, West Jordan
• Zeke Richards, Cottonwood vs. Mike Garcia, Lehi
• Doug Graff, Northridge vs. Jason Chen, West
No. 2 singles
• Justin Mansell, Brighton vs. Jake Harris, Pleasant Grove
• Devon Wells, Layton vs. Tanner Foy, Hunter
• Jacob Tullis, Viewmont vs. Taylor Dawson, Northridge
• Blair Robbins, Lone Peak vs. Tanner Poulson, Cottonwood
• Phillip Vernon, West vs. Brady Carlson, Weber
• McKay Luu, Lehi vs. Diego Barajas, West Jordan
• Andy Ovard, Alta vs. Zach Siddoway, Bingham
• Garrett Wilkes, Davis vs. Mike Frazier, Taylorsville
No. 3 singles
• Chase Stoner, Brighton vs. Nick Olsen, Pleasant Grove
• Michael Moody, Davis vs. Hayden Turner, Hunter
• Nic LeBaron, Viewmont vs. Carston Henderson, Northridge
• Jack Aubrey, Bingham vs. Spencer Thurgood, Cottonwood
• David Murrell, West vs. Jacob Lawson, Weber
• Derek Schetselaar, Lone Peak vs. Keyen Neal, West Jordan
• Connor Pulsipher, Alta vs. Keaton Mathis, Lehi
• Tommy Glende, Layton vs. Remington Larson, Kearns
No. 1 doubles
• Parker Roberts/Robert Avila, Alta vs. Ammon Story/Ben Bearss, Lone Peak
• Cooper Brown/Michael vonBallmoos, Davis vs. Andy Larsen/Taylor Barton, Taylorsville
• Ethan Hymas/Isaac Ford, Viewmont vs. Mitchell Adamson/Ben Graff, Northridge
• Parker Judd/Hunter Wilson, American Fork vs. Jonas Jones/McKay Nilsen, Jordan
• Devin Richie/Daniel Liu, West vs. Spencer Anderson/Maverick Denhalter, Layton
• Parker Howell/Ty Burke, Riverton vs. Gus Stevens/Cory Trivett, Cottonwood
• Anthony Panuzio/Mitchell Mansell, Brighton vs. Tyler White/Matt Sorensen, Bingham
• Bryce Pierson/Matt Kendell, Weber vs. Willie Peterson/Eric LeMoine, Hunter
No. 2 doubles
• David West/Jordan Branch, Alta vs. Parker Evans/Matt Tobler, Bingham
• Josh Wolfey/Justin Needham, Layton vs. Derek Dapp/Nathan Hubner, Granger
• Zach Beckstrand/Brandon Kasparian, Viewmont vs. Bryson Hales/Mark Frame, Fremont
• Juan Jose Amaya/Tyler Miller, Lehi vs. Nick Schindler/Bennett Garden, Jordan
• Blake Allred/Easton Batt, Hunter vs. Dominic Emerson/Jacob Poyner, Weber
• Matt Zwick/Lucas Wale, Lone Peak vs. Taylor Nelson/Jordan Evans, Copper Hills
• Brandon Budge/Cheyenne Perry, Brighton vs. Stephen Sheffield/Christian Olsen, Pleasant Grove
• John Vellinga/Connor Fox, Davis vs. Patrick Chen/Jiayi (Scott) Ge, West
No. 1 singles
• Jay T. Anderson, Waterford vs. Caleb Roundy, South Sevier
• Jacob Hatch, Gunnison vs. Ricardo Gomez, Layton Christian
• Joshua Yang, Manti vs. Alex Henabray, St. Joseph
• Bryce Baker, Rowland Hall vs. Taylor Harris, Parowan
No. 2 singles
• Quinn Pritchett, Waterford vs. Bo Burrell, Gunnison
• Elijah Stock, Grand County vs. Bailey McDougal, Summit Academy
• Connor Aste, Manti vs. Nathaniel Rose, Wasatch Academy
• Matthew Zubair, Rowland Hall vs. Carter Holliday, San Juan
No. 3 singles
• Aaron Friedman, Rowland Hall vs. Bo McKinlay, Richfield
• Daniel Perdomo, San Juan vs. Jordan Heaton, Summit Academy
• Preston Clark, Manti vs. Gordon Hsu, Wasatch Academy
• Christian Heath, Waterford vs. Joey Carlisle, Gunnison
No. 1 doubles
• Jonathon Zubair/Karim Shaaban, Rowland Hall vs. Macrae Olson/Alec Tatton, Grand County
• Joshua Jensen/Tanner Jones, Richfield vs. Kyle Kim/Jason Wang, Wasatch Academy
• Jeremy Anderson/Logan Lund, Manti vs. Colin Greenhill/Duce Namazi, Layton Christian
• George Matus/Max Gruber, Waterford vs. Dallin Jacobsen/Jeff Walker, San Juan
No. 2 doubles
• Dylan Zanker/Julian Stacey, Rowland Hall vs. Jordan Jones/Trent Leavitt, South Sevier
• Eric Lee/Davis Hardy, Manti vs. Mason Galecki/Spencer Hall, Wasatch Academy
• Curtis Jeffery/Wyatt Pererson, Richfield vs. Preston Mayer/Quinton Hildreth, Summit Academy
• Kevin Wu/Shravan Ramayanapu, Waterford vs. Dakota Adams/Kesian Barton, San Juan
See more about comments here.