Ursuline’s Morgione set for state tennis debut


By BOB ETTINGER

sports@vindy.com

Ursuline tennis player Greg Morgione spent the better part of last week looking for redemption. He spent this week looking to the future as he prepares for the Division II Ohio Tennis Championships at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason after placing fourth at the sectional tournament and second at the district event.

“I definitely didn’t expect to be fourth [at the sectional] after winning last year,” Morgione said. “Everyone was better than me and I struggled. I went back and practiced and made my way to qualify [for state]. I don’t think I was overconfident, but I was really inconsistent in my strokes and I was giving away a lot of points.”

Morgione and fellow Boardman sectional place-winners Jake McDivitt of Lakeview and Armand Nannicola of Warren JFK will begin play this morning.

Morgione understands this may be his first dance at the state tournament, but it doesn’t have to be his last and he’ll look at it exactly that way.

“Just being a sophomore, I know I have two more years,” he said. “I’d rather get more comfortable with the atmosphere. My goal is to make it to the second day by winning my first two matches to get a spot in the finals. I’ll be more comfortable my junior and senior years and I’ll have a shot to win it all. There’s not a lot of pressure this year. I have two more years if I don’t make a long run.”

McDivitt won that Boardman sectional, but was third at the district while Nannicola was third in Boardman and fourth at the district.

“Being so close, you can get a chip on your shoulder,” McDivitt said. “You get adrenaline playing those guys and if they beat you, or you beat them, the next time the other one will win. It helps drive us to beat one another. That’s how close we are.”

McDivitt is looking to make the biggest splash he can in Mason.

“I want to get as far as I can,” he said. “It’s crazy to get to go to state. It’s really exciting. I really want to win in the first round. That’s my first goal. I want to focus on trying to win that first match, then the second and take them all one at a time. I don’t want to look ahead too much, but the ultimate goal is a state championship. That’s what I’ve been working for.”

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