Hinsdale Central dominates at Downers South

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Top-ranked Hinsdale Central was dominant as it picked up the title in the Benet Team Tournament at Downers South on Saturday.

The defending state champions went 13-2 in matches at the tournament, which featured four of the top six teams in the Sun-Times rankings.

Leading the way for Hinsdale Central was seniors Alex Hagermoser and Peter Heneghan. The duo, which won the doubles state championship last spring, went 3-0 at No. 1 doubles. But they were tested.

“We actually had a tough first one against Moline [Jed Wood and Pranav Puri] where we were down a set and a break and then we kind of turned it on after that,” Heneghan said. “In the next two [matches] it started out close and then we were able to separate. A lot of that comes from having played together so long. We knew what we had to do to get it done.”

Hagermoser and Heneghan won the match against Wood and Puri 2-6, 6-3, 10-1 and then went on to beat Downers South’s Cody Freischlag and Christian San Andreas 7-6(4), 6-1 and New Trier’s Chas Mayer and Will Szokol 6-3, 6-2.

“It’s good to get a win early on and get our confidence going,” Hagermoser said. “Sophomore year we were under the radar, no one knew who we were. Since [winning state] a lot more people know who we are and what we do.”

Sophomore Martin Joyce was also impressive for the Red Devils, going 3-0 in his matches. He started the day with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Moline’s Justin Rumley, then earned a 6-3, 7-6(4) victory over Downers South’s Tony Leto before beating New Trier’s Alex Galoustian 6-4, 6-4 in the final match of the day.

The eight-team tournament was played with each team match consisting of two singles matches and three doubles matches. Hinsdale Central defeated Moline 5-0 to start the day and then beat Downers South 4-1 in the semifinals before topping New Trier 4-1 in the championship.

The Trevians, which opened the day with a 4-1 win over Benet before beating Deerfield 3-2 in the semifinals, split their squad with some players competing in the Evanston Tournament, which they won.

Mayer and Szokol picked up a nice win in the semifinals, beating Deerfield’s Harrison Crist and Noah Rosenblat 6-3, 7-6(2) before the loss to New Trier. The duo may have learned more from the loss to the defending state champs than the win against the Warriors.

“We definitely learned they are beatable,” Mayer said. “We had a good game plan going in. I think it was a good match. We definitely would love to see them in the future.”

“I think we learned a lot about what we can do better,” Szokol added.

Deerfield finished third after beating Downers South 3-2 in the third-place match. Jack Kasbeer went 1-0 at No. 2 singles with a victory over New Trier’s Wyatt Mayer 6-2, 6-0 while going 2-0 at No. 1 singles with wins over Barrington’s Varun Parekh 6-0, 6-4 and Downers South’s Leto 6-1, 6-4.

“I played well today,” Kasbeer said. “It was kind of tough with the wind but I kept my mental game in check. I was looking to be attacking and everything just seemed to fall in place.”

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