Playing in his first individual state meet, North Central’s Steven Christie took a set to get used to the environment at Park Tudor. Once he did, the senior showed why he’s one of the hottest tennis players in the state.
After dropping the final five games of the opening set, Christie picked up an early break in each of the second and third sets to pull away from Yorktown’s Ian Landwehr 2-6, 6-2, 6-4 to advance to Saturday’s state meet semifinals.
Christie won for the 26th time in 27 matches and hasn’t lost a match since late August. He knocked off Landwehr (23-2), who had advanced to the state semifinals the previous three seasons and had won 105 matches in his high school career.
“I was just trying to get used to things that first set,” said Christie, who won the match on a perfectly placed volley that Landwehr couldn’t run down. “It was a completely different atmosphere than I’ve ever experienced – playing for yourself, not having your team to pull you through. I had to get used to all that. But once I got that break in the second set, I felt like I really took control.”
Christie, who helped North Central win its third straight team title last weekend, will face Richmond’s Eric Hollingsworth ((28-0) at 10 a.m. Saturday. He’ll be joined by teammates JJ Kroot and Jon Tuerk, who continued their postseason roll with a 6-4, 6-4 win against Evansville Memorial’s Chase and Colin Throop (22-2) in doubles play. Kroot and Tuerk improved to 23-1.
“It was definitely hard at first to get back up after last weekend’s big win,” Tuerk said. “But right now, I feel like our team chemistry is the best it’s been all season. You can always improve technical things, but our chemistry is really good right now.”
Making his first appearance at the state meet, Franklin junior Noah Roberts fell 6-3, 6-3 to Leo’s Eli Steiner. Roberts (24-3) led 2-1 in the first set before dropping five of the next six games. Steiner (25-3) broke out to a 4-1 lead in the second set and then won the final two games after Roberts closed to 4-3.
“He’s not used to playing in an environment like this,” Franklin coach Rod Snyder said of Roberts. “But he can use this, keeping playing in offseason tournaments and get more team experience. He’ll be in good shape.”
Center Grove doubles tandem Ryan Stemle and Tye Thixton fell to the Throops in the opening round, 1-6, 7-5, 6-4.
Should inclement weather occur Saturday, the semifinals and finals will be moved indoors. Check www.ihsaa.org or follow the IHSAA on Twitter at @IHSAA1 for updates.
At Park Tudor
Steven Christie (North Central) def. Ian Landwehr (Yorktown), 2-6, 6-2, 6-4; Eric Hollingsworth (Richmond) def. Logan Charbonneau (New Albany), 2-6, 6-4, 6-2; Sam Concannon (Culver Academies) def. Bryce Bonin (Crown Point), 6-1, 6-3; Eli Steiner (Leo) def. Noah Roberts (Franklin), 6-3, 6-3.
Chase Throop/Colin Throop (Evansville Memorial) def. Ryan Stemle/Tye Thixton (Center Grove), 1-6, 7-5, 6-4.
J.J. Kroot/Jon Tuerk (North Central) def. Chase Throop/Colin Throop (Evansville Memorial), 6-4, 6-4; Jory Shoup/Zach Wisen (Bloomington North) def. Daniel Chua/Chase Dinkel (Terre Haute South), 6-4, 6-3; Jimiroqua Stanchin/Ryan Van Wyngarden (Carroll) def. Matt Marcus/Henry Wolf (Munster), 7-5. 7-5; Luke Rush/Logan Troyer (Goshen) def. Thomas Gifford/ Tim Porsche (Penn), 6-4. 6-2.
Where: Park Turdor, 7200 N. College Avenue
When: Semifinals, 10 a.m., Saturday; Finals, 2 p.m., Saturday
Admission: $5 per person
Steven Christie, North Central (28-1) vs. Eric Hollingsworth, Richmond (28-0).
Sam Concannon, Culver Academies (26-0) vs. Eli Steiner, Leo (25-3).
JJ Kroot and Jon Tuerk, North Central (23-1) vs. Jory Shoup and Zach Wisen, Bloomington North (25-1).
Jimiroqua Stanchin and Ryan Van Wyngarden, Carroll (25-5) vs. Luke Rush and Logan Troyer, Goshen (26-1).