Citizen Staff Writer
HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
Brothers Dominic and Carlos Bermudez, two of Arizona’s top junior circuit tennis stars, are excited to be back on the court this spring playing for Palo Verde High School.
Dominic, a junior who cruised to the Class 4A Division II boys singles championship as a freshman in 2007, and Carlos, a sophomore, each sat out a year ago to concentrate on playing in nonhigh school events.
“It’s great to be back with my team. They’re a great group of guys,” Dominic said. “They’re the greatest I could ask for. They work hard and I’m just glad to be here playing for them again. We both realize this is a team and not about either of us at all.”
Dominic spent his sophomore year training with coach Alex Ramirez in Phoenix and competed in the United States Tennis Association’s junior tournaments.
“I think I’ve really improved my game playing in those tournaments,” said Dominic, who is ranked No. 3 in the USTA Southwest Boys’ 18 singles rankings. “I feel I don’t need to prove myself again by going after a state individual title. This year, I’m really focused on getting a team state title.”
Dominic knows he has to stay sharp or his younger brother will pass him on the team depth chart.
Carlos, ranked No. 3 in the USTA Southwest Boys’ 16 singles rankings, lost a set 6-4 to his older brother before the season began to see who would play in the team’s No. 1 spot this year.
“It was pretty close and everyone talks about it at school,” Carlos said of the heated showdown with his brother two weeks ago. “We’re always asked, ‘Who would win if you guys played?’ We play all the time and if we play in-state, that is where the match would really play out.”
Last year, Carlos attended USTA High Performance Tennis Academy in Boca Raton, Fla., but this year is focusing on a state title.
“We have a lot of good athletes on this team,” he said. “We help them with whatever they need. Everyone on this team is good.”
It didn’t take long to see that the baseball tradition at Canyon del Oro will continue in 2009.
The Dorados scored nine runs in the top of the first inning in their season opener Thursday, a 14-0, five-inning win over Douglas. Pitcher Doug Steele picked up the one-hitter win and senior star Ryan Retz hit a three-run homer in the first inning.
CDO plays Class 4A Sonoran Region rival Catalina Foothills in Friday’s second round of the Cactus Classic at Foothills.
Empire 14, Tombstone 4 (5 innings): At Empire, Scotty Watson struck out eight, pitching all five innings, and went 2 for 2 at the plate with a double, a home run and five RBIs.
- High School Sports Editor Geoff Grammer contributed.
Ranked brothers lead Titans in tennis