PCA’s Slayton and Azlin win district doubles championship

Published 9:42 am Thursday, April 18, 2024

Henry Slayton and Thomas Azlin were struggling a bit early in their boys’ doubles match Wednesday at the MAIS District 4-3A tennis tournament.

The Porter’s Chapel Academy team dropped two games in a row and were a point away from going down 3-2 in the first set against Franklin Academy’s Hoyt Carroll and Chandler Olivier when they finally got their act together.

With Slayton serving, they rallied to win that game. And the next. And the next. In fact, the PCA pair didn’t lose another game until late in the second set and rode the wave of momentum all the way to a championship.

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Slayton and Azlin went on to win that match 6-2, 6-1, and then earned another straight set victory in the championship match against St. Augustine’s Harrison Murray and Will Philip Wilson 7-6, 6-2.
The victories kept them undefeated this season, gave them the district title in No. 1 boys doubles, and sent them on to the next round of the postseason.

Slayton and Azlin, as well as teammate Noah Labarre, will compete in the Class 3A South State tournament Monday at East Central Community College in Decatur. The top two finishers in each bracket at the district tournament advanced.

The Class 3A state tournament is May 1 in Ridgeland.

Labarre got there in No. 2 boys singles. He lost to St. Augustine’s Gibson Washer 6-2, 6-4 in the championship match, but those two players were the only ones in the bracket so both advanced to South State.

Otherwise, it was a difficult day for PCA on its home courts at Halls Ferry Park. All of its other players and doubles teams lost in the semifinals.

The mixed doubles pairing of Nick Neihaus and Hadeligh Slayton fell to St. Augustine’s Katibeth Gray and Morgan White; Sophie Masterson and Marley Bufkin lost a tight 10-8 tiebreaker set to St. Augustine’s Caroline Sones and Conleigh Washer in No. 1 girls doubles; and Peyton Combs and Sarah Felker lost to Franklin Academy’s Laney Carter and Kenni Remore in No. 2 girls doubles.

In No. 2 boys doubles, Franklin Academy’s Aden Ward and Rowan Carter beat PCA’s John McGee and Corbin Bass in the semifinals, then went on to win a three-setter 6-3, 2-6, 6-4 over St. Augustine’s Andrew Clark and McKee Sones for the championship.

In girls singles, PCA’s Chelsea Fuller lost to St. Augustine’s Eszter Witherow in the No. 1 semifinals, and Mia Abdo lost to St. Augustine’s Lorin Ezelle in the No. 2 bracket. Both St. Augustine players went on to win their respective championships with 6-0, 6-0 victories in the finals.

In boys singles, St. Augustine also vexed PCA as Will Meyer beat Caleb Griffin in the semifinals and then went on to beat River Oaks’ Nicholas Patel 6-0, 6-0 for the No. 1 championship.

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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