FARMINGTON — It is hard for a high school coach to put his team’s fate into the hands of players that he doesn’t coach.
Thursday morning that was the case for the Harrison tennis coach Doug Cox. Heading into the finals, the Goblins trailed host Farmington.
After Harrison picked up the singles boys title, the Goblins had to wait for the finish of the doubles’ championship.
The double finals featured Prairie Grove and Farmington. The Goblins were secretly cheering for Prairie Grove. The Tigers won the second set, but Farmington came back to capture the second set.
Farmington jumped out to a 4-3 lead, but ended up losing the third set to allow the Goblins to claim the district championship.
Harrison scored eight points to best Farmington, who had seven, and Prairie Grove, who finished with six after claiming the doubles title.
Donnie Armstrong of Harrison came into the tournament as the No. 4 seed. He proved the seeding wrong. He rolled to the finals to claim a 6-1, 6-0 district title over Zack Pennington of Farmington.
Armstrong started with a 6-1, 6-1 win over his opening opponent of Prairie Grove on Tuesday.
Facing the No. 1 seed in the semifinals. Armstrong needed three sets to claim his ticket to the finals. He won the match, 6-2, 6-7 (5-7), 6-3.
Conner Phillips of Harrison won his opening set over his Prairie Grove opponent, 6-4, 6-4. He lost to Pennington in the semifinals.
The team of Ethan Bell and Will Mahoney of Harrison were seeded third. That is where the duo finished.
The pair won a quick 6-0, 6-0 set over Shiloh Christian before falling to the Farmington team in the semifinals.
Bell and Mahoney defeated the No. 2 Farmington team in the third-place match, 8-2.
Harrison’s Joey Adams and Brady Winkle lost in the opening round of the tournament. They fell to the No. 2 Farmington team, 6-1, 6-1.
Armstrong has secured a spot in the Class 4A State Tennis Tournament that will be held at Clarksville beginning Oct. 14. The doubles team of Mahoney and Bell will have to learn of their fate after a seeding committee meeting determines seedings for the state tournament.
“The boys came on strong at the end,” said Harrison tennis coach Doug Cox. “We started playing well at the right time. Our seniors — Ethan (Bell) and Donnie (Armstrong) led the way this season and Will (Mahoney) and Conner (Phillips) stepped up big to help us get some big match wins to secure the championship. I am very proud of all the boys.”