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ALBUQUERQUE — They’ve known each other for as long as they can remember. Actually, even longer.
Dominic Lucido and Chase Havemann were in the hospital nursery at the same time. Now, they’re sharing half of a state championship.
Lucido/Havemann won a thrilling three-set contest against Albuquerque Academy’s George Cooper/Brandon Jew, bouncing back after being dominated in the second set to win 6-1, 3-6, 7-5.
It’s the second straight boys Class 4A doubles championship for the Hilltopper program. Matt Whicker, who was on hand for the title match, and Patrick Raichur won that title in 2010.
Lucido/Havemann, who had cruised through the 4A draw, looked nearly untouchable after the first set of the final, breaking Academy’s serve twice
“We were feeling good after that first set,” Lucido said. “I think (the Chargers) probably realized they had to get their act together. George became a lot more involved and he played more intensely.”
Cooper, a member of one of the top tennis families in the history of the state, had a monster second set to force the decisive third.
Things didn’t start off well in the third set for the Hilltoppers, with Havemann’s serve getting broken. But with Cooper serving up 1-0, Los Alamos scored on a pair of big volleys to get the break right back.
That break seemed to swing the momentum back into the Hilltoppers’ favor.
“We had a bad break in that first game,” Havemann said. “That could’ve been it, but we were able to break George. We kept saying that was it.”
The 4A singles and doubles tournaments wrapped up Thursday at the Jerry Cline Tennis Complex.
In boys singles, Stephen Townsley advanced to the state semifinals, but ran into a buzzsaw in Academy’s Thomas Cooper. Cooper won their semifinal match 6-1, 6-1.
Townsley dropped into the third-place match Thursday evening but earned a victory over St. Pius X’s Devin Roach, 6-3, 6-3.
Townsley advanced to the semifinal round by dropping Mesilla Valley Christian’s Eric Cordry 6-2, 6-0 in his first match Thursday.
Townsley used an effective mix of hard shots from the baseline and approaches to keep Cordry guessing throughout.
Against Roach, Townsley used an effective serve-and-volley approach.
The girls doubles tennis team of Colleen Fitzsimmons/Gillian Hsieh-Ratliff also picked up a third-place finish Thursday.
Fitzsimmons and Hsieh-Ratliff, the Hilltoppers two best singles players who teamed up to compete in the doubles tournament this season, lost the first set of their third-place contest against Silver’s Kaylee Milligan/Jenny Orosco, but bounced back in the final two sets to win 5-7, 6-3, 6-2.
Fitzsimmons/Hsieh-Ratliff turned away Deming’s KaLee Marufo/Sarah Estrada 6-3, 6-1 in Wednesday’s opening round, then knocked off Piedra Vista’s Emma Goff/Frachesca Goff in Thursday morning’s quarterfinal 6-3, 6-3.
The 6-3, 6-3 win over Goff/Goff set Los Alamos up against the third-seeded Shayla Baysinger/Molly Merrion of Farmington.Baysinger/Merrion prevailed in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4.
It was the second year in a row Los Alamos earned third in state doubles competition. Brenna O’Hara/Sarah Worland finished third in 2010.