Title Clinched: Albemarle boys tennis sweeps Harrisonburg to win Region 5D title

Photo by Bart Isley

Albemarle’s boys tennis is never really quite sure what its going to see in region tournament play. Over the years they’ve run into some paper tigers with gaudy records that folded quickly and they’ve run into some buzzsaws that have ruthlessly ended the Patriots’ season.


That’s why it’s pretty critical for the Patriots to be completely locked in and ready for anything when the postseason starts.


So far, so good.


“We struggled with Western during the regular season and we won every other match but I still feel like we are playing our best tennis now,” said Albemarle’s No. 2 Jack Stalfort.


Albemarle swept Harrisonburg 5-0 Friday afternoon to clinch the Class 5, Region D championship, earning the right to host a Class 5 state quarterfinal game Friday June 1.


The Patriots sealed the win over a Harrisonburg team that played a seven-hour match in the semifinals the day before with Benny Bigler-Wang’s 6-1, 7-5 victory at No. 5 singles. Bigler-Wang shook off a tough stretch in the second set to close the door on the Blue Streaks and seal the region title.


“He’s definitely a clutch player, he’s very consistent, he has a nice spin on his serve,” Stalfort said of Bigler-Wang. “He’s just a great player and he’s very focused.”


Albemarle’s No. 1 David Sun rolled 6-0, 6-0 to set the tone for the Patriots while Stalfort won 6-1, 6-2, Lucas Balcells won 6-1, 6-0 and Ethan Matthews won 6-0, 6-1. Henry Forsyth’s match at No. 4 was called once Bigler-Wang sealed it.


Albemarle 5, Harrisonburg 0

Region 5D Championship

  1. David Sun (Albemarle) def. Toby Yoder 6-0, 6-0
  2. Jack Stalfort (AHS) def. Theo Yoder 6-1, 6-2
  3. Lucas Balcells (AHS) def. John Collier 6-1, 6-0
  4. Henry Forsyth (AHS) versus Gabe Poirot 5-7, 2-3 DNF
  5. Benny Bigler-Wang (AHS) def. Michael Sy 6-1, 7-5
  6. Ethan Matthews (AHS) def. Noah Pope 6-0, 6-1