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Monday, Aug. 29, 2016

'Dogs looking for title

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Chris Matthews
SIKESTON -- The seeds for the Class 1, District 1 Tennis Tournament are in for tomorrow's events.

The tournament will start at 9 a.m. at the Sikeston High School tennis courts.

Sikeston, after posting an 11-2 dual record this season, got the No. 1 doubles team and had the Nos. 3 and 4 singles seeds.

Sikeston's doubles team of Clayton Matthews and Sam Zhao posted a 10-1 record this year, including a 9-7 victory over defending district champion Blake Branum and Derek Hoppe of Charleston.

Sikeston's singles player Chris Matthews was seeded third and Logan Hampton was fourth.

"I was pleased to get a few guys seeded," said Sikeston coach Brian James. "Chris got seeded based on his finish last year and I was pleased to get Sam and Clayton a good seed. They've had a good year -- beating Branum and Hoppe pretty much got them the top seed."

James likes his team's chances to win a team district championship. The Bulldogs took second last year, but won three district titles in four years prior to that.

James has won four district championships in his eight years as head coach.

"All year long I thought we had a well-rounded team," said James. "We started off a little slower than I would've wanted, but we've picked it up the last couple weeks. I think we've played as well as we could the last couple weeks heading into the district. I think we've got four good, solid entries. It basically comes down to the two singles and two doubles accumulating team points. I think we're as deep as any team in it. It's just a matter of us playing well and advancing through each round."

But in addition to earning team points, James has high hopes to get some of his players through to the state competition. The top two placers will advance to the state tournament.

"I'm hopeful to get everybody through, but based on seeds I like Sam and Clayton's chances," said James. "It's a team competition, but it's also an individual competition. You want your team to get as many points as you can, but you want your individuals to place high to also get a shot at going to state."

Also competing for Sikeston will be the doubles team of Andrew Powell and Charlie Jones.

Hoppe and Branum were seeded second in the district. Locally, Dexter's Thomas Fowler was seeded second in singles.