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Harding’s Payiavlas leads area contingent to district

Harding’s Anthony Payiavlas finished third in singles at the Division I sectional at Solon to earn a spot in the district tournament next week.

Payiavlas, the third seed, lost to second-seeded Yukun Wang of Mayfield, 2-6, 6-2, 6-1 in the semifinals, then beat the fourth seed, Nikolas Romanov of Solon, 6-3, 6-3 in the third-place match.

In Division II, all eight entrants advancing to the district from the Boardman Sectional are from area schools. The semifinals and finals are scheduled today.

In singles, semifinalists include top-seeded Ryan Carnahan of Lakeview, second-seeded Chris Simon of Ursuline, unseeded Jerald Brain of West Branch and the winner of the quarterfinal match between third-seeded Carmen D’Alesio of Poland and unseeded Anthony Steines of Kennedy.

All four seeds in doubles are in the semifinals and therefore qualified for district. They are No. 1 Gavin Blacksher and Josh Khavari of Ursuline, No. 2 Glenn Christopher and Dylan Khavari of Ursuline, No. 3 Jack Brant and Jim Scotford of Poland and No. 4 Antonio D’Alesio and Michael Pelini of Cardinal Mooney.

The unseeded Canfield doubles team of Jaden Jaffer and Jimmy DeLisio won four matches throughout the week at the Division I sectional at Canton and also qualified for the district.

The most recent match for Jaffer and DeLisio was a 7-5, 6-2 win over the fourth seed, Ian Bleininger and Ethan Kopp of Dover, in the quarterfinal round. That puts the Cardinals into the semifinals which are scheduled today. Since the top four finishers advance to the district, the Canfield duo is guaranteed to advance.

Two Boardman players, Carter Mascola and Ryder Kreps, came one victory short of advancing to district in singles. Both had won three straight matches before falling in the quarterfials, Mascola to second-seeded Blake Hood of Alliance, 6-0, 6-1, and Kreps to top-seeded Griffin Millsbaugh of Louisville, 6-0, 6-1.

The district tournament is next week at Springside Racquet Club in Akron. Early rounds are scheduled Thursday for Division I and Friday for Division II. Both divisions will be in action Saturday for semifinal matches and beyond.

The top six finishers in Division I advance to the state tournament and the top four move on in Division II.

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