Defending 4A state singles champion Andrew Kabacy was sitting in a chair at the Vancouver Tennis Center looking complete gassed Saturday afternoon.
But the Skyview High senior was still the champion.
Kabacy won his third consecutive 4A district title, beating Gunnar Harlan of Battle Ground 7-6 (6), 6-4.
Both players, and Darrian Manalo of Battle Ground who placed third, advance to the bi-district tournament next week at Tacoma to play for state berths.
History between Kabacy and Harlan go back to when they first started playing as 8 year olds. Recent history saw Harlan winning both times they played against each other in league play this season, but neither knows (or was willing to share) who has more wins over the other.
One thing is for sure, they both left it all on the VTC court Saturday.
“It was tough,” Kabacy said. “It was my hardest match against him. It was the best he’s ever played against me.”
Harlan was equally complimentary to Kabacy’s play.
“He played well,” Harlan said. “We were both hot and cold throughout the match.”
Harlan opened the match by losing his serve and found himself down 4-1 before coming back to take the lead at 5-4.
Kabacy held his serve, and broke back to make it 6-5, but was lost his next service game and it went to a tiebreaker.
Kabacy won the first four points, Harlan five of the next six. On the 14th point, Kabacy came in and put away a forehand volley for the set.
The second set went back-and-forth after Harlan jumped out to a 3-1 lead.
Kabacy went up 4-3, with the match on serve. He broke on the final game of the match.
Kabacy said just winning the match kept him going.
“My attitude is if I don’t finish first, I finish last,” Kabacy said.
Manalo defeated Jonathan Hutley of Skyview in the third-place match 6-2, 6-4.
Another defending state champion is also moving on.
Union’s Alex Calpagiu, 4A state doubles champions last year, and Quinn Lamey won the district title over Skyview’s Chris Sheppert and Joey Gaylor 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.
Those teams will be joined by Union’s Kyle Mosier and Brayden Shoemaker at the bi-district. Mosier and Shoemaker, seed sixth, upset No. 3 seed Brian Wang and Wilson Ho of Camas 7-6 (5), 6-3.
Skyview, the defending state team champion, won the district team title for a second consecutive year.