by Jason Drake
The Woodville Eagle tennis team competed in the Legacy Hot Chocolate Tournament on February 7 and the Ozen Tournament on February 14.
The Legacy Hot Chocolate Tournament was held at Lamar University and Brentwood Country Club in Beaumont. The Woodville teams excelled as the players competed in two divisions A and B.
Senior sensation Sean O'Neil played well in a 32 player entry draw to land in the finals in division A. O'Neal drew a bye in the first round and matched up with Lumberton's Virgil Irwin in round two. O'Neil easily won 6-2 and 6-2. O'Neal defeated Justin Oster of Silsbee in round three by the same score. The win landed O'Neil in the semifinals to face the second seeded Drew Anderson of Kirbyville. Anderson was defeated 6-4 and 6-4. O'Neil faced Kenny Nguyen in the finals. O'Neil battled hard, but came up short 6-4 and 6-3.
Senior Octavia Tapia drew Kirbyville's Jennifer Motcheck in the first round in division A. Tapia was defeated by the eventual tournament champion 6-2 and 6-3.
Justin Livingston and Ben Worsley played so well in the opening tournament that Coach Ramos played them in the Division A boys' doubles. Livingston and Worsley matched up with the team of Logan Burke and Bryce Russell from Hardin Jefferson. The pair from Woodville came on top 7-5 and 7-5. The win advanced the duo to the semi-finals where they matched up with the number one seed Chris Bishop and Asad Suman from Nederland. Livingston and Worsley played hard, but fell short 6-2 and 6-2.
The Eagles dominated the boys' singles and doubles in the B division. The boys' singles had a full 32 players entered. Enrique Gonzales played outstanding reaching the finals. Gonzales faced the number one seed Trenton Boyett of Vidor and defeated him 6-4 and 7-5. Gonzales advanced to round sixteen and matched up with Devan Ramsey of Bridge City. Once again, Gonzales was victorious 6-2 and 6-3. Gonzales played against Eddie Slaughter and won by a score of 6-4 and 6-2. In the semifinals, Gonzales slid passed PNG's Raul Nguyen 6-3 and 6-3. Gonzales advanced to the finals and competed against Dennis Leh of Kirbyville. Gonzales brought home the gold medal with the 6-4 and 6-3 victory.
Gonzales was not the only Eagle to take home gold in Beaumont. Sophomore Caleb Dinger and freshman Cameron Coker took first place in the boys' doubles. The boys were the number two seed and drew a first round bye. Woodville outplayed Lumberton's Chris Marie and Cody Welch to advance to round eight against Jacob Fisher and Ben Adams of Silsbee. Dinger and Coker responded after losing the first set 3-6, to win the final two sets 6-4 and 10-8. Woodville would face Beaumont West Brook two in the semifinals and one in the finals. The Eagles defeated Beaumont Westbrook number two 7-6, 4-6, and 10-7. Once again the pair from Woodville faced adversity dropping the first set 4-6. Dinger and Coker responded winning the last two sets 6-4 and 10-3 for the championship.
In the girls' doubles Cameron Hutto and Aureanna Stacey defeated Lumberton's Morgan and Megan Celesteine 3-6, 6-3 and 10-7. They would lose in the second round to PNG .
Woodville excelled in the Ozen Tournament held on February 14. Tapia and O'Neal were silver medalists in mixed doubles. Partners Dinger and Hutto placed second in boys' doubles, while Stacey and Hutto were the runner-up in girls' doubles.