Flaniken brothers win Inverness

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 27, 2007

INVERNESS &8212; John and Jim Flaniken both collected wins Sunday in the Inverness Racquet Club Junior Tennis Championships. The brothers, who helped lead the Pelham High Panthers this sprng at positions one and three respectively, both overcame close matches to capture first.

&8220;It was great, because that was my first win in the 18&8217;s. And I&8217;m happy for Jim because he&8217;s only 13, and he won in the 14&8217;s. That&8217;s good for both our confidences,&8221; John Flaniken said.

John, a rising 16-year-old junior at Pelham, battled Paul Hahn of Tuscaloosa Academy for three sets in the 18-year-olds&8217; semifinal. After losing the first set 7-5, Flaniken tied the match with a 6-2 victory in the second set.

&8220;I thought I might have been starting to wear him down, and I started playing better,&8221; the older Flaniken said. &8220;That&8217;s sort of what my style is, to try to wear the opponent down.&8221;

He went on to take the tiebreaker 10-7 to advance to the final, where he defeated Kyle Smith 6-0 and 6-4.

Jim Flaniken, who played varsity tennis as an eighth grader this spring, had what he considered a close match in the finals against Jack Nicholas, despite winning 6-2 and 6-2.

&8220;I&8217;d lost to him two or three times in the past, and I managed to beat him this time,&8221; Jim Flaniken said.

Champions in seven age groups were crowned through tournament play, while the 12-year-old boys&8217; and 10- and 12-year-old girls were named from round robin play.

Rakesh Goli was 3-0 in the 12-year-old boys&8217; round robin, defeating Nicholas Durr (6-1, 6-0), Will Brown (6-0, 6-0) and William Robey (6-4, 6-4).

In round robin girls&8217; play, Lamar Cooper swept the 12-year-old field with wins over Margaret Cartner (6-1, 6-2), Haley Crain (6-0, 6-1) and Amy Johnston (6-1, 6-1). Ashley Ochsenhirt won the 10-year-old competition defeating Sena Suswam (6-4, 6-1) and Mary Smyth (6-2, 6-3)