By Ryan Murken
Your Prep Sports
IOWA CITY – The weekend morning-afternoon double duals on the Mississippi Valley Conference tennis schedule can be a physical challenge for players.
City High freshman Diego Paciotto-Biggers found that out on Saturday.
The afternoon part of those double duals can offer a shot at redemption for a coach that watches their team begin the day with a loss.
Chip Hardesty already knew that but he got a reminder Saturday as City High rebounded from a 5-4 loss to Cedar Falls to earn a 5-4 win over Waterloo West.
I thought this morning, we played under our potential in several spots and that is a match we should have won and I think probably Cedar Falls would concede that but it didn’t happen and this afternoon was better,” Hardesty said. “This morning was a bit of let down but I’m glad they bounced back.”
Paciotto-Biggers teamed with Jon Albaugh to earn the deciding win in the nightcap at number two doubles.
It was a quick turnaround for Paciotto-Biggers who dropped a tough 7-6 (4), 6-2 to Waterloo West junior Parker McNally at number two singles.
“I was really tired and really sore but halfway through the doubles match I started feeling better,” Paciotto-Biggers. “We were able to get a win.”
The dual came down to doubles play after the two teams split six singles matches.
City High got Paciotto-Biggers wins from defending state runner-up Joe Hoff, Victor Kalil and Sameer Ali.
Ali and Hoff cruised to a 6-1, 6-0 win at number one doubles and West High pulled even with a win at number two doubles.
Paciotto-Biggers and Albaugh made plays late in each of the two sets to secure a 6-2, 6-3 win over the West High tandem of Nick Ritland and Andrew Christensen.
“I think winning both sets when it was 2-3 to make it 5-2 was amazing,” Albaugh said. “It’s way harder to come back after losing that and it was a big confidence booster for us.”
The win against Waterloo West was a bounce back win for the Paciotto-Biggers and Albaugh doubles squad that lost against Cedar Falls after winning the first set 6-0.
“We didn’t let anything get to us,” Albaugh said. “Halfway through the set Diego beaned me with a serve and I think that kept us grounded. We kind of laughed about that and we didn’t get made we were losing points we just stayed calm.
The match-deciding doubles win capped a 2-2 day for Paciotto-Biggers who defeated Cullan Meyer of Cedar Falls 6-3, 6-2 in singles in his opening match.
It was also a learning experience for the first-year varsity player who has settled into the number two singles spot for Hardesty.
“It was tough for Diego but he did come through and I’m really proud of that,” Hardesty said. “He is learning, this is a learning experience. These double duals are tough. It’s more physically demanding then they think it’s going to be and they are learning that.”
Hoff was dominant on his way to a 4-0 performance on Saturday.
The senior won both of his matches at number one singles 6-0, 6-0.
Cedar Falls 5, City High 4
1. Joe Hoff (ICH) def. Joe Schneider 6-0, 6-0
2. Diego Paciotto-Biggers (ICH) def. Cullan Meyer 6-3, 6-2
3. Siddhartha Kalala (CF) def. Sam Bloom 7-6 (4), 6-3
4. Ben Campbell (CF) def. Mickale Sadecky 6-2, 6-2
5. Cedric Hassman (CF) def. Jon Albaugh 6-4, 6-3
6. Michael Riadzaky (CF) Victor Kalil 6-3, 5-7, 10-8
1. Hoff/Sameer Ali (ICH) def. Schneider/Hassman 6-3, 6-3
2. Kalala/Campbell (CF) def. Paciotto-Biggers/Albaugh 0-6, 6-1, 10-6
3. Bloom/Sadecky (ICH) def. Meyer/Hassan Warraich 6-4, 6-3
City High 5, Waterloo West 4
1. Joe Hoff (ICH) def. Dane Hurst 6-0, 6-0
2. Parker McNally (WW) def. Diego Paciotto-Biggers (ICH) 7-6 (4), 6-2
3. Zack Heyerhoff (WW) def. Mickale Sadecky 6-4, 6-3
4. Victor Kalil (ICH) def. Nick Ritland 6-4, 2-6, 10-6
5. Andrew Christensen (WW) def. Miles Morrow 6-1, 7-5
6. Sameer Ali (ICH) def. Jack Schaefer 6-3, 6-3
1. Hoff/Sameer Ali (ICH) def. Hurst/Schaefer 6-1, 6-0
2. McNally/Heyerhoff (WW) def. Sadecky/Kalil 6-2, 6-3
3. Paciott-Biggers/Albaugh (ICH) def. Ritland/Christensen 6-2, 6-3