Western Mass. tennis: No. 1 seed for Greylock boys, but not unbeaten Monument girls
The seedings for the Western Mass. tennis tournaments saw one Berkshire County team earn a No. 1 seed -- just not the one with the unbeaten record.
The Mount Greylock (14-1) boys earned the top seed the in the Division III tournament, as they look to defend their Western Mass. title. Greenfield (13-2) is No. 2, followed by Belchertown (12-7), South Hadley (9-9), Monument Mountain (9-2) and Turners Falls (9-4).
On the girls side, an undefeated record could not earn Monument Mountain (14-0), the defending state runner-up in Division III, a top sectional seed.
"[Getting the No. 1 seed] was a little shocking to me. I didn't expect that one," Greylock coach Stephen Bryant said. "Usually it's tough to get the top No. 1 and 2 [seeds], because those seeds tend to play against more D-I teams. But it's nice getting recognition for how great the team is and how great we're doing."
Monument faces South Hadley on Thursday at 3:30. Belchertown faces Turners Falls on Thursday at 3:30 p.m. as well.
Greylock receives a bye in the first round. The Mounties await the winner of the Monument-South Hadley match.
Greylock beat Monument twice in the regular season, but both matches were decided by a 3-2 score. If Monument gets past South Hadley, Bryant said he's looking forward to facing the Spartans again.
"I'm excited for [the matchup]. I hope we face them," Bryant said. "The way the match was last time we played them, I'm sure they'd want a second chance to play my guys."
On the girls side, D-III's top seed in the west went to South Hadley (15-4). Monument is seeded second, followed by Belchertown (13-5), Holyoke Catholic (12-1), Palmer (12-3), Mount Greylock (14-3), Greenfield (12-3), Lee (10-5), Frontier (8-6) and PVCS (7-5).
Monument coach Jeff Caligari said South Hadley's strength of schedule gave them the nod at No. 1 over the Spartans.
"I'm happy with [the seed]," he said. "I figured we'd be a No. 1 or No. 2. ... Last year we were a No. 2 or No. 3, so I'm OK with it. Sometimes the No. 1 seed is a bad omen."
Greylock also avoids a first-round matchup and will face Belchertown on Friday, at a time to be determined.
Lee will host Frontier on Thursday at 3:30 p.m. If the Wildcats were to advance, they'd have a match against South Hadley on Friday at 4. A Lee tournament run would allow the team to avoid Greylock or Monument until the championship match.
Lee coach Jeff Forget said he does not like to look ahead, but avoiding the Berkshire County foes is an advantage.
"Those two teams comprise all of our losses. I guess I'd want to avoid them, but you don't want to look beyond your next match," he said.
Forget added, when he's not facing either Greylock or Monument, he's rooting for both teams to have successful tournaments.
For now, Berkshire County teams are focused on making it four straight titles from county schools. Monument is looking to make it back-to-back titles.
"They realize it, but they don't talk about it," Caligari said. "At the beginning of the year, our whole focus was to repeat."
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