Team depth propelled the Sharon High School boys tennis team to one win away from its second straight state Division 2 final match.
Winning at first and third singles, and second doubles, the Eagles defeated Medfield, 3-2, in the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association Boys Team Tennis South Division 2 semifinals. The teams played today at the Adirondack Club in Franklin, rather at Sharon High, due to rain.
"Just a clutch performance from our depth positions," Sharon head coach Matt Freeman said.
"(At third singles, senior) Aditya (Puttigampala) had huge leg cramps. He stepped up when he needed to. I thought second doubles played their best match of the season. I thought they were outstanding against a good doubles team.
"(At first singles, senior co-captain) Vivek (Nangia) took the clincher at number one, and we knew then we were moving on."
Medfield and Sharon also met in the 2011 semifinals. Sharon won that match on their home court, 4-1.
With today's win, Sharon advanced to the South D2 finals at 4 p.m. Saturday at Medway High School against second-seed Hingham, which defeated third-seed Scituate in today's other semifinal, 4-1. Saturday's winner plays the North D2 champion.
Sharon is the top seed in this year's 18-team bracket. Sharon is undefeated (16-0 regular season, 3-0 in the state tournament) entering Saturday's match.
Medfield is the fourth seed. The Warriors finished the regular season 15-2, and were 2-1 in the tournament.
"Both teams were very, very strong," Medfield head coach Vinnie Joseph said.
"When you get to this point in the tournament, both teams are very good, and it can be a real toss-up.
"Sharon is the defending champions. They certainly carried the mantle today. I'm very proud of our kids and the way they fought until the end. Hopefully, next year, we can show up again."
Today, at first singles, Sharon senior co-captain Vivek Nangia defeated Medfield senior Jay Latimer, 6-2, 6-2.
At second singles, Sharon freshman Peter Hu lost to Medfield senior Kevin Lynch, 2-6, 6-2, 10-7.
At third singles, Sharon senior Aditya Puttigampala defeated Medfield junior John Lewis, 6-3, 6-4.
At first doubles, Sharon senior co-captain Eric Bloom and junior Jake Steinberg lost to Medfield juniors Dan Cher and Henry Gagne,6-4, 3-6, 6-3.
At second doubles, Sharon senior Ben Gilman and junior Josh Dobbin defeated Medfield seniors Sam Horan and Ryan Cromarty, 6-4, 6-3.