skip navigation

Tennis Cats Undefeated at Sectionals to Start

By Joe Ginley '12 , 05/09/19, 2:30PM EDT


Li paired up with Vesikallio for two wins.

Yesterday marked the start of the Sectional Tournament for the Wildcats. It's safe to say that the Saint Ignatius tennis program is off to a good start.  

Both Saint Ignatius doubles teams and all three singles players advanced in the OHSAA Sectional Tournament.

The Wildcats will continue the journey through Sectionals on Thursday afternoon at North Ridge Tennis and Golf in North Ridgeville. 

Kenny Li and Thomas Deucher drew the No. 2 seed in the doubles portion of the Sectional Tourney at Oberlin College. The duo showed why they're so highly ranked, winning three matches.

The sophomore-junior duo tallied a 6-0, 6-2 victory in the opening round, besting Westlake's Frank Ricaurte and Clayton Boor. The triumph advanced Li and Deucher into the next round against Avon's Nick Janos and Jeremy Wiersch. The Wildcats' tandem again experienced little trouble in capturing a 6-0, 6-2 win.

The toughest match for the combo came in the semifinals. Li and Deucher faced off with Lakewood's Tru Smith and Ben Swartz for the right to advance to the quarterfinals. The Rangers' duo provided quite a battle in the first set, but the Wildcats emerged with the W, 6-3. Smart adjustments made in the second set allowed the Wildcats to ease into the semifinals with a 6-0 conquest.

Li and Deucher will face St. Edward's top combo of Michael Ohliger and Jack Dougher in the semis. 

Kai Vesikallio and Jack McNally drew the top seed in the doubles. The freshman-senior duo blew by the competition with little trouble, notching three double bagels. 

Vesikallio and McNally started off by besting Normandy's duo. The Wildcats' combo then breezed past an Elyria duo, rolling into the quarterfinals. Parma brothers Ralph and Riffigie Sano battled Vesikallio and McNally, but succumbed to the same fate, 6-0, 6-0.

The Wildcats' top combo will face Westlake's Terry Zheng and Amin Boukzam, the No. 4 seed, in the semifinals.

The top seed in the singles portion of the tournament, Nate Day captured two double bagel victories to start off his tournament run.

The sophomore eclipsed Brandon Bratovich, 6-0, 6-0, in the opening contest. Day then flowed past Avon's Mathias Hilton, 6-0, 6-0, in the next round to move onto the quarterfinals.

Day continues his journey on Thursday, facing off against Avon Lake's Michael Mandel in the quarterfinals.

Arjun Brahmbhatt, the No. 2 seed, also catapulted past the competition.

The junior kicked off the day with a 6-0, 6-1 triumph over Normandy's Paul Stegall. Rayukak Takezawa then confronted Brahmbhatt in the next round. Brahmbhatt performed even better, corralling a 6-0, 6-0 double bagel win over his Strongsville foe.

Brahmbhatt will do battle with Westlake's JP Mogyordy in the quarterfinals on Thursday for the right to advance to the semifinals. 

Should the Wildcats advance in the tournament, they will compete in Day 3 of Sectionals at Magnificat High School on Saturday at 9 am.