Belfast Swings to First Regional Boys Tennis Title

posted Jun 5, 2019, 8:00 AM by Betty Lu Davis
High school sports

Net gain: Belfast swings to first regional boys tennis title

In battle of unbeatens, Lions outlast Caribou 3-2 at Bates College
By Zack Miller | Jun 05, 2019
Photo by: Zack MillerThe 2019 Class B North boys tennis champions from Belfast Area High School.
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LEWISTON — For the first time in school history, the Belfast Area High School boys tennis team will play for the state Class B championship.

That is because, in a battle of unbeaten opponents, the No. 2 Lions (15-0) outlasted No. 1 Caribou (14-1) 3-2 in the Class B North title match on Tuesday afternoon, June 4 at Bates College.

The victory earned the talented Waldo County court squad, led by coach Scott Benzie and assisted by John Cameron, its first regional title and berth in a state championship match.

Watch video below. Photos from this match will appear later with this story.

Belfast will play the winner of Yarmouth and Freeport for the coveted state crown on Saturday, June 8 at 12:45 p.m. at Lewiston High School.

Freeport (12-1) is ranked first and Yarmouth (13-1) third.

Belfast and Caribou did not play during the regular season.

Earlier in the regional playoffs, Belfast beat No. 7 Old Town 5-0 and No. 6 John Bapst of Bangor 4-1. Caribou defeated No. 9 Erskine Academy of South China 3-2 and No. 5 Waterville 4-1 previously in the postseason.

"You can't replace this (feeling)," said Benzie. "I've been in a few (state championships) as a coach and a player, and you always think back to the events that happened. I'm 62 years old and I can still remember the things I did when I was 18. This is something these kids are going to remember for a very long time."

"I think it's great to make it all this way, especially after a great season," said Lion senior Sam Spectre. "It was nice [when we clinched]. Kyle [Agbuya] jumped in my arms, and it was a lot of fun."

"I was really happy," said Agbuya. "I don't know what to say. It feels really good [to be the first Belfast team to go to states]."

"We began feeding off Josh [Chun] and Eli [Jolliffe] (at the beginning of the season)," said Benzie. "They are the ones that got things going, and then we found a couple of athletes. The rest of the team has very little experience. There are three to four guys that have only played for two years, and [Bonarrigo] picked up a racket eight weeks ago. They've gelled, and the doubles have played well, and really stood up today."

The individual results, with Lion players listed first, were: In singles, Josh Chun lost to Parker Duprey, 2-6, 6-7 (5); Eli Jolliffe beat Sawyer Deprey, 6-2, 6-3; and Max Lewis lost to Gabe Rand, 2-6, 2-6.

In doubles, Dyllan Clark and Bonarrigo beat Aidan Plante and Cody Martin, 6-1, 6-4; and Spectre and Agbuya beat Brevin Barnes and Logan Cheplie, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2.