Spencer Kang earned three victories Thursday to advance to the championship match in his first high school district tennis tournament, at Green Meadows in Vancouver.
The Camas freshman defeated Heritage’s Mason Kestner 6-0, 6-0 in the first round, Union’s Jason Yu 6-1, 6-0 in the quarterfinals and Battle Ground’s Gunnar Harlan 6-4, 6-3 in the semifinals.
Kang pushed Skyview’s Andrew Kabacy to the brink in the championship match. He lost the first set 7-5, but won the second 6-2 to even things up. Kang forced a tiebreaker in the third set, before Kabacy fought him off for a 7-6 (7-4) victory.
“He played exceptionally well. It came down to just a couple of points in that third set tiebreaker,” Camas head coach Jonathan Burton said of Kang. “Any loss like that will only make him hungrier to come back and fight again.”
Camas finished in third place as a team at districts. Kang gained seven points, Sam Christopher added two points, and the doubles pair of Wilson Ho and Brian Wang earned one point.
Kang failed to qualify for state Saturday, after losing to Newport’s Edwin Carlos 6-1, 7-5.
Burton said he looks forward to coaching Kang and watching him develop in the years to come.
“He has the potential for a lot of growth in his mental game,” Burton said. “He has all the tools to develop into a really powerful player by the time he’s a junior and a senior.”