The third trip to the state tournament is a mix of familiarity and newness for St. Mary CC senior Andrew Linden, the area's only player at the state tournament this weekend.
in his final state tournament, there isn't much Linden will know about his first-round opponent for Friday's match in the Division II singles tournament. That's usually the norm at a tournament like this.
Yes, Linden has been to state twice before. This year, the tournament is back on the Ohio State campus, but the courts are brand new, and so is most of the field. Only Linden and Patrick Wildman return from last year's D2 singles bracket.
But Linden said not knowing much about his opponent is fine, since it'll help him avoid letting down his guard. He'll have a tougher draw this year comapred to last. He was third at districts last week — winning the third-place match after conserving some energy in the semifinals — so he drew a No. 2 from the central district, Joel Montgomery, Worthington Christian.
“All I know really is that he’s a real solid player,” Linden said. “He definitely has a strong game... He’ll be a tough first-round opponent.”
The state tennis championships start 9 a.m. Friday in Columbus. See the attached PDF for the Div. 2 singles bracket.
A look at Andrew Linden’s senior year for St. Mary CC, an other notable career milestones:
INDIVIDUAL RECORD: 33-1
TOURNAMENT WINS: Sandusky Bay Conference Tournament (2011 and 2012 singles champion); Division II tournament (2012 singles champion)
HOW HE GOT THERE: Finished third in the Div. II district tournament Saturday with 6-2, 6-3 win against Johnny Rutter, Lima Shawnee
LAST YEAR: All-Ohioan; Won first-round 6-1, 6-1; Lost second round 6-2, 5-7, 6-2
THIS YEAR: Linden faces sophomore Joel Montgomery (Worthington Christian) in the first round at 9 a.m. Friday