MUSCLE SHOALS —
Cullman tennis coach Nathan Bates couldn’t be much happier with the way his teams have started out so far this season.
The Bearcats certainly gave him cause to smile on Thursday as both squads went on the road and defeated Muscle Shoals by runaway margins.
Cullman’s boys ousted the two-time defending Class 5A state champion Trojans by a team score of 8-1.
No. 1 duo Baylor Adams and Jacob Davis got the ball rolling for the Bearcats, overcoming a 5-8 deficit en route to a 10-8 victory in doubles.
“That was outstanding,” Bates said of his top tandem. “I was super proud of them.”
Luke Bowden and Clint Watson teamed up for a 10-6 win at No. 2, while Ryan Hunt and Matthew Davis made it a perfect 3 for 3 with a 10-4 triumph at the No. 3 position.
Watson (10-3) and Adams (10-3) shone for Cullman as the top seeds in singles’ play, but it was Davis who once again battled back from the brink to garner his second victory of the day.
Trailing 4-8, Davis won seven of the last eight points to pick up an 11-9 victory over his Trojan foe.
“Jacob played out of his mind,” Bates said. “He played great. I’m super proud of him. It takes a lot of mental toughness to win like he did, but he really upped his game to do it.”
Hunt (No. 4) was the lone Bearcat to fall in singles. Davis (No. 5), Bowden (No. 6) and Jacob Lambert (exhibition) all earned victories.
The Black and Gold’s record now stands at 7-1 on the season. They will take on West Point at home today.
The Lady Bearcats were just as successful as their male counterparts, collecting a 7-2 team triumph to improve to 8-2.
Like Adams and Davis, top-seeded doubles tandem Hannah Cornelius and McKenzie Bussman battled back from deficits of 0-4 and 5-8 deficit to win a thriller in a tiebreak 11-10 (7-5).
No. 2 Olivia Sharpton and Bailey Baker (10-1) and No. 3 Mary Claire Smith and Kate Hood (10-6) were also victorious for the Black and Gold.
The Bearcats’ No. 1 and 2 players, Cornelius and Bussman, were ousted 6-10 and 0-10 respectively, but solid play from other players yielded yet another positive results for Cullman.
Sharpton (10-2), Baker (10-7), Anna Trevarthen (11-9) and Makenna Smith (10-5) were all triumphant for the Bearcats.
“I’m really proud of the girls,” Bates said. “They all pitched in and contributed points in our wins.”
The girls will have a few days off before taking on Muscle Shoals once again at home on Monday.
% Albertville 3, Cullman 1: The Bearcats’ Cody McCluskey scored the lone goal of the game for his team as Cullman fell to the Aggies on Thursday night.
Cullman’s junior varsity boys picked up a 2-0 win over Albertville, however, riding goals from Giovanni Rodriguez and Seth Andrews to a victory. K.J. Potter earned a shutout at goalkeeper.
% Good Hope 6, Danville 3: The No. 8 Raiders needed eight innings to dispatch their pesky area foes on Thursday evening.
Cara Goodwin pitched a complete game, allowing just four hits and striking out 15.
She drove in Kayla Tillman on a double in the first inning to give Good Hope an early lead.
The Raiders scored additional runs in the fifth and sixth innings, but did most of their damage in the final frame.
“We scored all three of our runs on walks and hit by pitches,” coach Wayne Harris said.”
The win improves Good Hope’s record to 10-5 on the season. It will host West Point today.
% New Hope 8, Holly Pond 3: The No. 5 Broncos (6-3-1) dropped their first area game of the season on Thursday with a five-run loss to the Indians.
No stats were provided for this game.
The No. 2 Bearcats’ winning streak came to a close with back-to-back losses to Southside on Thursday.
Cullman fell by scores of 1-9 and 2-3 to the Panthers to drop its season record back to 8-8.
No stats were available by presstime.
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