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Who won districts and qualified for the OHSAA boys tennis tournament?

The final draw for the Ohio High School Athletic Association boys state tennis tournament has been decided and many Greater Cincinnati athletes have their sights set on winning a state championship.

The OHSAA state tournament begins on Thursday, May 23 and concludes the following day at the College of Wooster & Aspen Racquet Club. There, competitors from Indian Hill, Seven Hills, Springboro, St. Xavier and Sycamore will compete for singles or doubles titles in two divisions.

Carson Dwyer is aiming for the second straight title for St. Xavier

A year removed from winning a state championship in doubles as a freshman, St. Xavier sophomore Carson Dwyer’s jump to singles has him claiming a section championship and a district title to qualify for state.

In the district tournament at Mason Middle School, Dwyer played his first two matches and dropped only one set. His first test came in the semifinals with Sycamore senior Nick Meyers. Meyers claimed the first set 4-6, before Dwyer recorded two 6-3 victories to win the match.

Dwyer also dropped the first set of the district final to Springboro’s Rishi Dore. After trailing 4-6, Dwyer took the title by winning the last two sets 6-0, 6-3. In the third-place match, Meyers defeated teammate Dhruv Kota 6-2, 6-2.

Sycamore’s double-barreled double play

On the doubles side of Division I district play, a pair of Sycamore groups went head-to-head in the tournament finals. Senior Nicholas Choo and freshman partner Chase Klugo posted a 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 comeback victory in the district final against teammates Andrew Wittenbaum and Arjun Rajagopala.

In the previous sectional round, Wittenbaum and Rajagopala finished first, while Choo and Klugo finished fourth.

St. Xavier’s Chase Homan and Nihal Narisetty met in the third-place match to qualify for state, beating Springboro’s Drew Baumgartner and Peyton Nelson 6-2, 6-1. Homan and Narisetty will look to win St. Xavier’s second straight state doubles championship.

Mahajan, Pollock’s last chance at first glance

In last year’s Division II state tournament, Seven Hills’ Avi Mahajan and Indian Hill’s Jack Pollock met in the state semifinals, with Mahajan earning a 6-4, 6-7, 7-5 victory. Mahajan fell in the final while Pollock finished fourth in the state after dropping the match in third place.

Fast forward to this postseason and the two have already met twice, splitting the series. Pollock took home the section championship, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 before Mahajan got one back in the district championship, 7-6 (5), 6-4. If the two meet again, it would take place in the Division II championship game.

Both seniors, Pollock is a three-time state qualifier and Mahajan is a four-time state qualifier. Pollock’s finish last season was his first, while Mahajan finished second and third in his stops.

Mahajan’s sophomore teammate Adi Mayak also qualified for state with a third-place finish in the district bracket.

Indian Hill brings two, Seven Hills participates in the doubles qualifiers

In the 2023 OHSAA Division II doubles tournament, no local players placed in the top four of the tournament. Three local riders will try to get back on the podium in 2024.

Indian Hill claimed the 2022 doubles title with the likes of then-sophomore RJ Poffenberger. Now a senior, Poffenberger has qualified for state for the fourth time (third in doubles) after scoring a sectional and district title with partner Neelan Gandhi. That pair won the district title 6-3, 6-2 over Gavin Isakov and Chinmay Machavaran of Seven Hills.

Poffenberger and Gandhi defeated Oakwood’s returning second pair Arick Baldwin and Noah Boyce in the semifinals. Baldwin and Boyce earned a 7-6 (4), 6-0 victory in the third-place match against Michael Ryu and Eshaan Gandhi, Indian Hill’s other state-qualifying pair.

In the opening round of the state tournament, Ryu and Gandhi will meet Pepper Pike Orange’s district champions, including senior Gabi Kalir, who was one half of last season’s state championship pair.

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