Essex Edges Stowe for Boys Tennis Title

STOWE, Vt. (WCAX) The Essex Hornets took down top seeded Stowe 4-3 Friday afternoon to claim their first Boys Tennis state title since 2011.

A dominant effort from individual state champ Preston Gordon, who downed Rai Bleda in straight sets to give Essex the early edge. Essex took second singles as well through Andy Shen.

But Stowe answered: Max McKenna and Sam Schoepke took first doubles 6-4, 6-1, and Alex Tilgner rallies from way down in the first set to take third singles and tie the match at 2.

Essex reclaimed the lead when Aiden Jensen and David Knickerbocker won second doubles in straight sets, meaning Stowe needed to win fourth and fifth singles to claim the title.

Jackson Seivwright did his part at 5th, winning this volley and taking down Brendan Brooks in an outstanding match, taking the tiebreak 12-10.

But it wasn't enough. Carl Fung pushed to the brink at 4th singles, but he held on to beat Jonny Driscoll 7-5, 6-7, 7-5 to give the Hornets their first title since 2011.

"A lot of relief considering we had lost to Stowe a couple matches ago," Fung said. "Just that stigma of having lost to that team just puts you in the mood that you have to play harder in order to win, but fortunately I think I played my hardest and the results showed."

"Just positive feelings about these guys, they've worked so hard this year," added Gordon. "I know Brendan had a tough one, but Carl's got his back."