Prairie freshman Nelson wins 3A district tennis title

first_img By Jeff Klein, Columbian sports staff Published: October 20, 2018, 8:51pm Share: GO Buy this Photo Prairie High School freshman Elijah Nelson won the 3A district title by defeating Mountain View’s Lu Abuizzah of Mountain View 6-3, 6-0 on Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018, at Vancouver Tennis Center. (Jeff Klein/The Columbian) Photo Jeff Klein Columbian sports staff Share: Prairie freshman Nelson wins 3A district tennis title Mountain View goes 1-2 in doubles Nothing like a little between-sets pep talk from the coach to get your game back on track.Prairie freshman Elijah Nelson’s game was hardly not on track Saturday, but he was being seriously challenged by Mountain View sophomore Lu Abuizzah in the 3A district singles final.After winning a hard-fought first set, then the pep talk, Nelson finished off Abuizzah rather quickly for a 6-4, 6-0 victory to claim the district title.“He just told me to keep my feet moving, play my game,” Nelson said of coach Stefan Lagielski’s courtside visit after the first set. “I was kind of nervous in the beginning.” By signing up you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.center_img [email protected] Receive latest stories and local news in your email: Nelson, the top seed, went 3-0 in the tournament without dropping a set.When the season started, Nelson said he was only thinking of just getting to districts. And now he has a first-place medal on his first try.“I just hope to get better and go as far as I can,” he said of his next goal.Abuizzah, seeded third, went 3-1 and needed three sets to get through his semifinal against Hudson’s Bay exchange student Manny Fernandez 1-6, 6-0, 6-0.By reaching the final, Nelson and Abuizzah had clinched spots to the bi-district tournament next week when state berths are on the line. Buy this Photo Mountain View doubles team freshman James Bertheau, left, and sophomore Vincent Hsu, won the 3A district title on Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018 at Vancouver Tennis Center. (Jeff Klein/The Columbian) Photo @jeffklein68 However, when the day started, coaches and players all thought the top four placers would be advancing to bi-district. It wasn’t until mid-morning when it was discovered that the bi-district bracket was only a 12-player draw. That meant the fourth-place finisher would only be an alternate and suddenly, many of the consolation matches took on more importance.No. 2 seed Fernandez would have to win two more matches to place third and get the bi-district spot. He did just that by getting past G Aujla of Evergreen 7-6, 6-3, and then Tyler Livingston of Evergreen 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 in the third-place final.Mountain View dominated the doubles with Vincent Hsu and James Bertheau beating teammates Kestutis Zalyps and Holden Henderson 6-0, 6-0 in the final.Combined, these two teams dropped just seven games in 14 sets.Prairie’s Cole Harmon and Ethan Hefflin placed third to advance to bi-district.Mountain View, which won the 3A GSHL team title with a 8-0 record, also won the team district title with 25 points. Prairie was second with 18 and Evergreen third with 11. (360) 735-4535last_img read more