Thursday, May 22, 2014
Adam Elliget capped a terrific season with a third-place finish Tuesday at the AAAA-AAA State Singles Tournament.
The Summerville junior went 4-1 at the tournament and defeated Wando’s Jacob Jahn 6-2, 6-1 in his final match to claim third place. Elliget’s only loss of the tournament was to Dorman’s Wood Benton, who claimed his second consecutive state singles championship with a 6-0, 6-1 win over Spartanburg’s Spencer Brown in the finals.
“Adam played some great tennis over the two days and in my opinion proved he should have been the No. 2 seed,” Summerville coach David Long said. “Wood was the better player today, I just wish it would have been for the state championship rather than a semi-final. Wood showed everyone why he is going to USC with his conservative and unflappable style of play. I left the Cayce Tennis Center with the upmost respect for him.”
Elliget entered the tournament at the Cayce Tennis Center as the No. 5 seed. In the first round, he defeated Emerald’s Kittanon Nanakhon 6-1, 6-0. He then defeated Spring Valley’s Blake McGuirt 7-6(5), 6-0.
Elliget defeated Jeffery Dayton of St. James 6-3, 6-1 in the quarterfinals to advance and face Benton, his friend since age 8 and current USTA doubles partner. Benton brought his A Game and defeated Elliget 6-0, 6-3. Long said Elliget got off to a slow start and Benton’s flawless and smart play neutralized Elliget’s big serve, heavy groundstrokes, and net game.
Elliget had extra motivation for the third-place match because it was Jahn who handed him his only loss of the regular season. Including the team playoffs, Elliget had an 18-1 record.
One of the wins was over Jahn, but the Wando eighth-grader avenged the loss just before the playoffs. “Jacob Jahn showed me a lot this season,” Long said. “Adam ran him off the court at Wando but after that match the kid got up at 5 a.m. every day to prepare for the rematch and the hard work paid off when he upset Adam. Jacob played great at Cayce and beat some very accomplished players en route to a fourth-place finish among our state’s best players.”
For Elliget, the third-place finish at the singles tournament is one of many highlights from his junior season.
Elliget’s 22 successful outings this year include quality wins over the top players from East Chapel Hill (NC), Raleigh Millbrook (NC), Wilmington Laney (NC), Beaufort, Bishop England, Bluffton, Porter-Gaud, Ashley Ridge, Fort Dorchester, Wando, Lugoff-Elgin, West Florence and South Aiken. With the junior’s help, Summerville advanced to the quarter-finals of the team playoffs.
“The addition of Adam was good for our returning players and for him,” Long said. “He lead our team on a deep playoff run and he matured during the year as a leader and as a player. I look forward to having him back next year as we try to continue to build a consistent tennis program here at Summerville.”
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