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Monday, March 25 , 2019, 1:10 am | Fair 50º

Sports: A Noozhawk Partnership with Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table, The Lab, and American Riviera Bank

Boys’ Tennis: DP’s Sasha Gryaznov Advances at Sectionals

His persistence pays off as he heads to the Round of 16 at Seal Beach

Under summerlike conditions, league finalists and winners played their sectional matches at Cate School on Friday.

Sasha Gryaznov (No. 41 B18s) of Dos Pueblos High School stepped on the courts at 9:39 a.m. to square off against his first opponent, Jose Luna of Warren High (Division IV). Focused and ready, Gryaznov dispatched him 6-0, 6-1 with finesse, making use of drop shots and groundies to the corners.

His second match proved tougher and took more than 90 minutes. He faced off against Bryce Beisswanger (a two-star recruit) from Viewpoint High (Division IV). The match seesawed, but in the end, Gryaznov proved more patient than his opponent and waited for the moment to unleash his forehand winners. He took the first set 7-5, and took control of the second set 6-1.

When the third round rolled around, Gryaznov put out all the energy he had to battle Matt Wagner (No. 91 18s, a three-star recruit) from Harvard-Westlake (DI and No. 1 in the Mission League) in a long match. Wagner snagged two games before Gryaznov could unload his plan of patience, pressure and depth. With that, Gryaznov took the set 6-2.

Then, the momentum shifted in the second set in Wagner’s favor, as he took the first three games before Gryaznov won a game. Eventually, Gryaznov took two more games to tie the set. After that, the players held or lost serve, with the set going to Wagner 6-4. In the 10-point tiebreaker, Gryaznov regrouped, varied his shots, throwing in lobs and spins, and prevailed 10-4.

Gryaznov heads to the Round of 16 at Seal Beach on May 28.

Way to go, Sasha!

— Liz Frech coaches boys’ tennis at Dos Pueblos High School.

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