Downingtown East leads way on 1st day of Ches-Mont doubles tourney

Downingtown East, who completed an undefeated Ches-Mont League boys’ tennis regular season Monday, led the way on the first day of the Ches-Mont Doubles Tournament Wednesday.

Three Cougar doubles squads (including the top two seeds) have advanced to the four-team National Division semifinals, which will be played today (Thursday) at West Chester Henderson High School.

Meanwhile, in the American Division, Unionville and Great Valley each advanced two doubles teams into the semifinals, to be played today at West Chester Rustin.

The top seed in the National Division, the senior twin pair of Abhiraj and Abhineet Srivastava, won both of their matches Wednesday in straight sets after an opening bye. Last spring, the Srivastava twins won the District 1 3A doubles tournament, then finished second in the PIAA 3A state doubles championships.

“They’re like the Bryan brothers, they were just born to play tennis together,” said Downingtown East head coach Chris Waychunas. “One’s a lefty and one’s a righty so they complement each other naturally.”

The No. 2 seed in the American Division is another pair of Cougar brothers, sophomore Shrihan Madam and freshman Vishruth Madam, and they won both of their matches Wednesday in straight sets after an opening bye. Shrihan Madam has held down the first singles spot for the Cougars this season, after suffering a wrist injury that cut short his freshman campaign.

“Again, they complement each other – Shrihan is more of the aggressor, and Vishruth is more of a finesse player,” said Waychunas.

The Srivastava brothers will face another Cougar duo in the semifinals, senior Rohun Gargya and sophomore Ashwin Natarajan.

“They’re tough because of their experience – Rohun played doubles at the state (team tourney) level for us last year,” said Waychunas. “Ashwin is a young guy who’s got all the tools – he has a good serve, he has good hands.”

The Avon Grove duo of senior Jack Perlman and sophomore Joe Ingram is the fourth team to advance to the National Division semifinals. They advanced after winning both Wednesday matches in straight sets after an opening bye.

“Jack and Joe played with consistency and dynamic net play,” said Avon Grove head coach Diane Maund. “They jelled as a team and in the second set (of the second round) were able to counter the adjustments of (their opponent).”

All four top seeds in the National Division had an opening-round bye, and all four of them advanced to the semifinals.

The top seed in the American Division, the Unionville sophomore pair of Matt Miller and Andrew Ou, won both of their Wednesday matches by a 6-0, 6-0 score. During the season, Miller has held down first singles for the powerful Longhorns, while Ou was in the second singles spot.

“They both have a high tennis IQ, and they have good chemistry – they gel quickly,” said Unionville head coach Jimmy O’Rourke. “They’ve played in some doubles tournaments outside of school.”

The second seed in the American Division, the Great Valley senior twin pair of Krish and Revant Mendiratta, won both of their Wednesday matches in straight sets. The two brothers have been the Patriots’ top two singles players this spring, and they won their opening match in the PIAA District 1 3A doubles tournament last year.

“Their strengths are a variety of shots and experience,” said Great Valley head coach Gerry McGrath.

In today’s semifinals, the Mendiratta brothers will face the Unionville senior duo of Jack Barrickman and Ryan Megill, who have held down the first doubles spot this spring for the Longhorns. Barrickman and Megill won both of their Wednesday matches in straight sets.

Off the court at Unionville, Barrickman and Megill are a powerful paddleball duo, and ranked No. 1 in the 2021-22 Final APTA Jr. Rankings (Boys 18 & Under Division). This spring, O’Rourke saw this duo as a key component in the Longhorn lineup.

“Jack has a big power game, and Ryan is what I call our doubles guru,” said O’Rourke. “Ryan has a doubles mindset – while he can play, and beat, top singles players, he is great at getting the best out of his teammates.”

The fourth American Division doubles team to advance to today’s semifinals is the Great Valley duo of senior Will Otterbein and sophomore Anuj Awatramani. In their second round match Wednesday, they battled to a 6-2, 2-6, 10-8 victory against West Chester Rustin’s Jack Benedetto and Daniel Scoffone.

“Will and Anuj are a team that was formed during the season and are gelling nicely,” said McGrath. “They are a nice combination of Anuj’s intensity and Will’s calm, mature demeanor.”

National Division Quarterfinals

Abhiraj Srivastava/Abhineet Srivastava (DTE) def. Soumil Patel/Sachiel Varada (DTE), 6-2, 6-1; Rohun Gargya/Ashwin Natarajan (DTE) def. Leo Shi/Jack Sheldon (DTW), 6-3, 7-6(5); Joe Ingram/Jack Perlman (AG) def. Kyle Finding/Maahir Tammara (WCE), 6-1, 6-3; Shrihan Madam/Vishruth Madam (DTE) def. Cashton Bailey/Alexander Sheldon (DTW), 6-0, 6-0.


American Division Quarterfinals

Matt Miller/Andrew Ou (UN) def. Vijay Upadhyay/Anish Arora (WCR), 6-0, 6-0; Will Otterbein/Anuj Awatramani (GV) def. Jack Benedetto/Daniel Scoffone (WCR), 6-2, 2-6, 10-8; Ryan Megill/Jack Barrickman (UN) def. Charlie Noll/Josh Verano (GV), 6-1, 6-1; Krish Mendiratta/Revant Mendiratta (GV) def. Nate Butler/Andy Ye (UN), 6-3, 6-3.

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