Region 10 boys tennis: Dixie edges Crimson Cliffs to finish regular-season slate unbeaten

No. 3 singles player Gavin Bishop of Dixie vs. Crimson Cliffs, St. George, Utah, May 4, 2023 | Photo by E. George Goold, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The regular season of Region 10 boys tennis has officially wrapped up, and the teams are looking ahead to the region and state playoffs.

No. 2 singles player Adam Miner of Crimson Cliffs vs. Dixie, St. George, Utah, May 4, 2023 | Photo by E. George Goold, St. George News

Last Thursday’s much-anticipated showdown between Dixie and Crimson Cliffs ended in a 3-2 home victory for the Flyers, who stayed unbeaten in region play while the Mustangs dropped to 5-1.

However, the Region 10 crown will actually be decided at this weekend’s region tournament Friday-Saturday, May 12-13, at Pine View High School in St. George (see update at bottom of story regarding venue change). 

In last Thursday’s contest at Dixie, Crimson Cliffs won both the No. 1 singles and No. 2 singles matches, while Dixie captured the No. 3 singles and both doubles matches.

Dixie coach Christian Wright said he and his players knew their season-ending contest against Crimson Cliffs was going to be a battle.

“The atmosphere was really fun,” Wright told St. George News. “We were able to recognize our seniors before the match. The weather cooperated.

“We had a really good turnout, probably the most I’ve seen in a high school match for a while. We really appreciate everybody who came out. There was some good tennis, with some nailbiters that went right down to the end.”

In first singles, Crimson junior Max Miner defeated Dixie sophomore Luke Jolley, 6-1, 6-1. In second singles, Max’s younger brother, freshman Adam Miner, defeated Dixie senior Caleb Kroll, 6-1, 6-4.

In third singles, Dixie junior Gavin Bishop defeated Crimson sophomore Nathan Bentley, 6-1, 6-0.

No. 1 singles player Luke Jolley of Dixie vs. Crimson Cliffs, St. George, Utah, May 4, 2023 | Photo by E. George Goold, St. George News

In first doubles, Dixie’s Ari Fackrell and Austin Beckstrom defeated Crimson’s senior twins Tanner Fraser and Josh Fraser, 7-6 (7-5), 6-1.

And in second doubles, Dixie’s Garrett Bishop and Michael Winward dropped their first set against Crimson’s Ty Durst and Chase Faldmo, but came back to win the match, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.

That match, which ended up being the final varsity contest to finish, ended up being the deciding factor in Dixie’s 3-2 win.

“I was really proud of the way they stuck in there,” said Wright. 

At this weekend’s region tournament, players will look to help their teams win the Region 10 trophy, in addition to boosting their own Universal Tennis Rating (UTR) rankings for the upcoming state tournament. 

“I look at it as another opportunity to get some more matches under our belts,” Wright said. “There’s some very good players on other good teams out there. We’ll see how it goes.”

At the state 4A tournament May 19-20 at Liberty Park in Salt Lake City, the Crimson Cliffs Mustangs will be looking to win their third straight state title. Last year’s championship ended in a three-way tie for first place, with Crimson sharing the title with both Ridgeline and Green Canyon.

However, Crimson Cliffs coach Colin Brown noted that the state scoring system has since been changed, making such ties less likely. The updated scoring system, which was first used for girls tennis last fall, awards more points for each round, starting with 2 in the first round and ending up with 5 points for winning a finals match.

If that scoring system had been in place last spring, for example, instead of being an 11-11-11 three-way tie, Crimson Cliffs would have been the outright state champions with 37 points, followed by Green Canyon (36) and Ridgeline (34). 

Following are summaries of other recent Region 10 action from the regular season’s final week:

Tuesday, May 2 

At Crimson Cliffs, the Mustangs defeated the Hurricane Tigers, 4-1. Hurricane’s lone win came in No. 3 singles, as sophomore Grant Dorius defeated Crimson senior Logan Thompson, 6-1, 7-6 (7-2). The other two Region 10 matches that afternoon were both 5-0 sweeps in favor of the home team, with Dixie shutting out Snow Canyon and Pine View defeating Cedar.

Thursday, May 4

At Pine View, the Snow Canyon Warriors prevailed 4-1. Pine View’s lone win came in first singles, where sophomore Zach Hansen outlasted Snow Canyon sophomore Cayson Southam in three sets, 3-6, 6-3, 6-3.

Tuesday, May 9

In a match that was originally scheduled for the previous Thursday, the Desert Hills Thunder won four of five varsity matches against the Reds on Tuesday. Cedar’s lone win of the afternoon came in first doubles.

Region 10 boys tennis final regular-season standings

  1. Dixie, 6-0.
  2. Crimson Cliffs, 5-1.
  3. Desert Hills, 4-2.
  4. Snow Canyon, 3-3.
  5. Pine View, 2-4.
  6. Hurricane, 1-5.
  7. Cedar, 0-6.

Updated May 11, 10 a.m. to reflect venue change for the Region 10 tournament, which will instead be played at Pine View High School on May 12-13, due to the courts at Tonaquint Tennis Center being unplayable.

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