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Jason Schmitt is the editor of, the high school sports website for The Oakland Press. He has served as the sports editor for a number of newspapers, including the Daily Tribune in Royal Oak and the Macomb Daily in Mount Clemens. In his time in the industry, he has covered every high school sport and has served a a beat writer for boys and girls soccer, boys and girls tennis, hockey, wrestling, bowling and cross country.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Here are my 2014 boys tennis finals predictions

No time to waste. Here are my predictions for Divisions 1-2-3. I broke down everything, match by match, though I include just total points and championship finals here. Agree, disagree?

Novi 30, Brother Rice 25, Troy 25, Ann Arbor Huron 22, Ann Arbor Pioneer 17, Bloomfield Hills 13, Rochester Adams 13, Northville 10, Port Huron Northern 10, Troy Athens 9, Ann Arbor Skyline 9, Grand Blanc 9, Grosse Pointe South 7, Holland West-Ottawa 6, Traverse City Central 5, Rochester 4, Grandville 4, Midland 3, Eisenhower 2, Livonia Stevenson 1, Utica 0, Livonia Churchill 0

Flight Finalists
1S — Tim Wang (Novi) d. Connor Johnston (Northville)
2S — Koushik Kondapi (Novi) d. Steve Forman (Troy)
3S — Alex Wen (Novi) d. Jack Winkler (Brother Rice)
4S — Andre Liu (Novi) d. Henry Fuchs (Ann Arbor Pioneer)
1D — George Hamaty-Joe Paradiso (Brother Rice) d. Maxx Anderson-Daniel Yu (Novi)
2D — Will Brenner-Orion Sang (AA Huron) d. Brendan Dillon-Christian Abelarde (Brother Rice)
3D — Adi Das-Anidow Saha (Troy) d. Alex Cardigan-Brenden Chen (AA Huron)
4D — Chauncey Williams-Anders Rasmussen (AA Huron) d. Aneesh Rastogi-Brandon Guo (Troy)

My thoughts
When the season began, I was a firm believer in Novi's singles lineup and the team depth(s) of Brother Rice and Troy. But the Wildcats have proved to have some depth as well - two #1 seeds in doubles. There just isn't a scenario I see where Novi doesn't bring home the state title. There would have to be at least two upsets in singles and the 1-seeds in doubles would have to stumble. Could it happen? Sure. But I don't see that. Can't wait to see Wang-Johnston - Part 3. I don't think the Tim Wang I saw at regionals is the one that will show up Saturday. Johnston looked great. Wang did not. I want to see them when they're both on. Kondapi is hungry, Wen is really good and Liu is due (see how that worked out?) I predict a Novi sweep in singles, but something tells me they'll get three titles there. Just couldn't figure out which one to take away. I liked Brother Rice's draws. I have them getting to three flight finals. I think Hamaty and Paradiso are hungry.

State finals preview
Novi regional story/photos
Regional roundup
Clarkston regional story/photos
Wang-Johnston feature story

Midland Dow 31, Grand Rapids Forest Hills Northern 25, Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central  22, Portage Central 19, Detroit U-D Jesuit 17, Birmingham Seaholm 15, Birmingham Groves 15, Grosse Pointe North 13, North Farmington 11, Okemos 9, Portage Northern 7, Battle Creek Lakeview 6, Flushing 4, Walled Lake Western 3, Gibraltar Carlson 3, Holly 2, Berkley 1, Pinckney 1, Wyandotte Roosevelt 0, SCS Lakeview 0, Southgate Anderson 0, Edsel Ford 0

Flight finalists
1S — Steward Sell (Portage Northern) d. Varun Shanker (Midland Dow)
2S — Colin Angell (Midland Dow) d. Ben Orwin (Portage Central)
3S — Michael Szabo (Midland Dow) d. Justin Minzlaff (GRFHN)
4S — Aditya Middha (Midland Dow) d. Jacob Wiltjer (GRFHC)
1D — Nick Cusmano-Mitchell Zacharias (GPN) d. Sahil Tandon-Cameron Raedy (Portage Central)
2D — Ryan Roach-Daiki Adachi (GRFHN) d. Andrew Latessa-Will Geller (Seaholm)
3D — Humzah Azeem-Ryan Conner (GRFHC) d. Jalen Zeman-Jack Dolan (Groves)
4D — Sanjay Balijepalli-Daniel Zhang (Midland Dow) d. Joey Preston-Reed Aleck (GRFHC)

My thoughts
Full transparency here. Division 2 is always the hardest to predict - for me. I don't have many results from the west side of the state. And there are more great teams over there than here on the east side. So I rely on the great work of the seeding committee to guide myself. Not many upsets picked here. Dow has won five straight state championships and should win No. 6 on Saturday. Local teams Seaholm and Groves will see the quarterfinal round in a handful of flights each, but I have them reaching the semifinals in just two apiece. Just not enough points to compete with the top five.

State finals preview
Groves regional story/photos
North Farmington regional story/photos
Regional preview story/photos

Country Day 39, Cranbrook 31, East Grand Rapids 23, Grand Rapids Christian 16, Holland Christian 17, Coldwater 11, Sturgis 11, St. Joseph 10, Petoskey 9, Zeeland East 9, Haslett 8, DeWitt 7, St. Clair 6, Parma Western 6, Trenton 5, Mt. Pleasant 5, Chelsea 4, Hamilton 4, Richmond 4, Armada 2, Yale 2, Goodrich 2, Allegan 1, Charlotte 1, Cadillac 0

Flight finalists
1S — Noah Karoub (Country Day) d. Benji Jacobson (C-K)
2S — Marc Sable (C-K) d. Davis Wong (Country Day)
3S — Jakob Gahn (Country Day) d. Ryan Rhoades (Holland Christian)
4S — Michael Khaghany (Country Day) d. Max Condon (EGR)
1D — Blake Burstein-Damian Runkle (Country Day) d. Chase Ghesquiere-Matthew Gerard (C-K)
2D — Rishabh Nayak-Adam Junn (Country Day) d. Nolan Trepeck-Joe Cavataio (C-K)
3D — D.J. Bailey-Andrew Joslyn (Country Day) d. Alex Hubers-Steven Meng (C-K)
4D — Anand Prabhu-Jack Mettler (Country Day) d. Colin Petzold-Brandon Kerr (C-K)

My thoughts
The separation between Country Day and Cranbrook - and the rest of the state - is staggering. The Yellowjackets are arguably the best team in the state, depending on who you ask. It would be fun to break down a Novi-Country Day matchup involving all their starting parts. That aside, the Yellowjackets have a chance to sweep here, something they have not been able to do over their past three championship runs. This team is as or more balanced as any of those teams. The #1 singles final could go either way. Jacobson is really, really talented, but Karoub is so steady. The 2-singles final should be good too. I liked the way Sable looked at the regional. Enjoy Burstein and Runkle at 1-doubles. They're the best pairing in the state - all divisions.

State finals preview
Cranbrook regional story/photos

For all of our tennis stories and photos, go to our Tennis home page on MIPrepZone

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