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The tennis season ended Friday for Drake Borden and his Coupeville High School teammates. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

One and done.

Coupeville’s first, and most likely last, season as a member of the most dangerous boys tennis league in the state came to an end Friday in Seattle.

The Wolves, competing at the Emerald City League tourney at the Amy Yee Tennis Center, had all six of their players eliminated in the first round.

#1 singles player Jakobi Baumann put up a strong fight before falling 6-4, 6-2 to Cody Clayhold of Bear Creek, while Drake Borden was bounced 6-0, 6-2 by Josh Davydov of Seattle Academy.

In doubles competition, both CHS duos also fell in straight sets.

Zach Ginnings and Jacob Burke were blanked 6-0, 6-0 by Anders and Tate Gibbons of Seattle Academy, then Tiger Johnson and Jaschon Baumann lost 6-1, 6-1 to Quinn Chow and Griffin Murch of Bush.

It was the final prep tennis match for the Baumann twins and Johnson, as all three graduate next spring.

While Coupeville didn’t get far in the postseason, the Wolves put together a better-than-expected season, finishing 7-6 in league play, 8-6 overall.

CHS claimed fourth-place in the eight-team league, trumping Bush, South Whidbey, Bear Creek and Eastside Prep.

The only ECL teams the Wolves were unable to beat were Seattle Academy, University Prep, and Overlake, a trio of schools which have combined to win a startling majority of 1A state tennis titles in the past decade.

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Coupeville High School tennis guru Ken Stange compares beards with Harris Sinclair. (Photos by Jackie Saia)

Wolf veterans (l to r) Jakobi Baumann, Jaschon Baumann, Tiger Johnson and Sinclair were honored Wednesday on Senior Night.

The ever-busy Baumann clan.

Tiger Johnson and the president of his fan club.

The core of a talented team which held its own against private school foes, while also winning the Emerald City League Sportsmanship Award.

They beat every expectation.

Tossed into the brutal Emerald City League, the toughest tennis conference in the state, the Coupeville High School boys proved small, rural, public schools can compete with ultra-ritzy private academies.

Capping the regular season Wednesday with a 4-1 rout of visiting Eastside Prep, the Wolves sent their seniors out on a high note and assured themselves of a winning record in league play.

Coupeville, which beat four of their seven conference foes, including sweeping two matches from arch-rival South Whidbey, finished 7-6 in league, 8-6 overall.

“We finished in fourth-place. Not too shabby,” said CHS coach Ken Stange. “We greatly exceeded my goals and expectations.

“Today was another example of our guys playing hard and gutting it out,” he added. “We had a little of everything. Easy wins, third-set tiebreakers, and a close loss.”

It was about more than just wins this season, as the Wolves also received the conference sportsmanship award.

“I’m very proud that the league coaches gave our boys the award,” Stange said. “It’s a testament to how hard the boys compete.

“Win or lose, my guys try very hard every time. They are classy and graceful. Many of the other coaches positively commented on it.”

With the regular season complete, Coupeville heads to Seattle Friday for the ECL tourney.

Jakobi Baumann and Drake Borden are slated to compete in singles, while the duos of Zach Ginnings/Jacob Burke and Tiger Johnson/Jaschon Baumann will vie in doubles.

 

Complete Wednesday results:

 

Varsity:

1st Singles — Jakobi Baumann beat Clayton Johnston 6-4, 3-6, 17-15

2nd Singles — Drake Borden beat Chase Crane 6-2, 6-1

1st Doubles — Zach Ginnings/Jacob Burke lost to Max Goetzman/Julian Meia 4-6, 6-1, 10-7

2nd Doubles — Mason Grove/James Wood beat Kaiea Ly-An Yong/Steven Pei 6-2, 6-1

3rd Doubles — Jaschon Baumann/Tiger Johnson beat Sahas Srini Hasan/Taras Pylypenko 6-0, 6-0

 

JV:

4th Doubles — Koby Schreiber/Andrew Aparicio lost 6-4

5th Doubles — Harris Sinclair/Thane Peterson lost 8-6

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Tiger Johnson teamed with Jaschon Baumann Monday to upend rivals from vaunted Seattle Academy. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

“I love those guys!”

Longtime Coupeville High School tennis guru Ken Stange is a bubbling volcano of emotion, and when his players truly step up and play to their absolute best, he’s as appreciative a coach as they come.

Monday afternoon he was talking about seniors Jaschon Baumann and Tiger Johnson, his #3 doubles duo, who have caught fire in the second half of the season.

Facing off with rivals from Seattle Academy, the undefeated champs of the Emerald City League and the front-runner to win the 1A boys state tennis team title next spring, Coupeville knew it would be in for a rough afternoon on its home courts.

But, thanks to a win from Baumann and Johnson, their sixth straight, the Wolves became one of the few teams to take a point from the Cardinals this fall, eventually falling 4-1.

The loss drops Coupeville to 6-6 in league action, leaving them in fourth-place in the extremely tough eight-team conference, and 7-6 overall.

The Wolves close the regular season Wednesday, when they host win-less Eastside Prep and celebrate Senior Night.

Two of the 12th graders who Stange will honor are Baumann and Johnson, a duo he has seen blossom over this season, and their careers.

Tiger and Jaschon were splendid today. They have such a love for the game, and today it showed,” Stange said. “Their season got off to a rough start, but now they’ve run off six straight, quite a few of them nail biters.

“I’ve really been focusing on the two of them having fun and enjoying the game and enjoying their final season,” he said. “It’s really paid off!”

While the Wolves dropped the other four matches, Stange was thrilled to see his netters never back down from their foes, no matter how much private school aura they might have been flashing.

“It was fun watching the guys play against the best team,” he said. “Every single one of the guys left it all on the court, so to speak.

“They tried very hard and never gave up.”

 

Complete Monday results:

 

Varsity:

1st Singles — Jakobi Baumann lost to Ezra Magaram 6-2, 6-0

2nd Singles — Drake Borden lost to Kurt Gunlach 6-2, 6-3

1st Doubles — Zach Ginnings/Jacob Burke lost to Anders Gibbons/Josh Davydov 6-2, 6-0

2nd Doubles — Mason Grove/James Wood lost to Orson Smith/Dimitri Vladimir 6-2, 6-0

3rd Doubles — Jaschon Baumann/Tiger Johnson beat Coltrane Thomas/Blake Calvo 2-6, 6-4, 10-8

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Jacob Burke, seen in an earlier match, teamed with Zach Ginnings for a win at #2 doubles Thursday. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

There is very little room for error when playing in the toughest tennis league in the state.

That point was driven home Thursday, as the Coupeville High School netters, playing their third match in as many days, were nipped 3-2 by the visitors from The Bush School.

The loss, which drops the Wolves to 6-5 in Emerald City League play, 7-5 overall, was a reversal from the first time the two schools faced off eight days ago.

Back then it was Coupeville which snuck away with a 3-2 win, thanks to a late victory at #1 singles in a third-set tiebreaker.

Thursday, the Blazers returned the favor, bouncing back to sweep both singles matches and win at #1 doubles.

CHS wraps its regular season run next week with home matches against undefeated Seattle Academy Oct. 15 and win-less Eastside Prep Oct. 17. The second rumble is Senior Night for the Wolves.

After that, Coupeville sends two singles players and two doubles teams to the ECL tourney Oct. 19 at the Amy Yee Tennis Center in Seattle.

If the Wolves qualify, districts are the next day at the same locale.

 

Complete Thursday results:

 

Varsity:

1st Singles — Jakobi Baumann lost 6-4, 6-2

2nd Singles — Drake Borden lost 6-3, 7-6(12-10)

1st Doubles — Mason Grove/James Wood lost 6-4, 6-1

2nd Doubles — Jacob Burke/Zach Ginnings won 6-1, 7-6(7-1)

3rd Doubles — Jaschon Baumann/Tiger Johnson won 6-4, 0-6, 11-9

 

JV:

3rd Singles — Koby Schreiber won 6-1, 5-7, 10-7

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Jaschon Baumann, here with Madison Rixe, teamed with Tiger Johnson Wednesday to spark Coupeville tennis to a league win. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Want to make a group of grizzlies turn and run? Get yourself a tiger.

With both their doubles match and the team match on the line Wednesday, Coupeville High School netters Tiger Johnson and Jaschon Baumann responded in epic fashion, ruining Bear Creek’s Senior Night festivities and lifting the Wolves to another win over a ritzy private school.

Johnson and Baumann trailed 7-4 in a third-set tiebreaker to 10 points, then stormed back to capture the final six points of their #3 doubles match.

That was the clincher, as Coupeville eked out a 3-2 win on the road, while claiming a season sweep of Bear Creek.

Proving to be the ultimate comeback kings, the Wolves nabbed two of their three wins after dropping the opening set.

Coupeville’s #1 doubles duo, Mason Grove and James Wood, joined Baumann and Johnson in pulling off come-from-behind victories.

With the win, its second in as many days, CHS improves to 7-4 on the season, while also lifting its mark in Emerald City League matches to 6-4.

Competing in the eight-team conference, which features six private schools and interlopers Coupeville and South Whidbey, the Wolves have more than held their own, beating four of seven schools at least once.

Two of their four remaining matches are against teams they beat the first time around (Bush and Eastlake Prep), and CHS sits in fourth-place in the toughest 1A league in the state.

The Wolves trail only Seattle Academy, University Prep and Overlake, who have combined to win a staggering amount of state tennis titles over the last decade.

 

Complete Wednesday results:

 

Varsity:

1st Singles — Jakobi Baumann lost to Cody Clayhold 6-7(3-7), 6-2, 10-5

2nd Singles — Drake Borden beat Robert Jiang 6-1, 6-1

1st Doubles — Mason Grove/James Wood beat B. Spoelstra/George Anderson 3-6, 6-3, 10-2

2nd Doubles — Jacob Burke/Zach Ginnings lost to Josh Kelleran/Steven Wang 6-0, 7-5

3rd Doubles — Jaschon Baumann/Tiger Johnson beat Aaron Yang/David Sherrer 2-6, 7-5, 10-7

 

JV:

4th Doubles — Thane Peterson/Andrew Aparicio lost 7-6(10-8)

5th Doubles — Koby Schreiber/Harris Sinclair lost 6-2

6th Doubles — Aparicio/Schreiber won 6-2

7th Doubles — Peterson/Sinclair won 6-3

8th Doubles — Aparicio/Schreiber lost 6-4

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