CARY — The power, precision and poise displayed by Cole Bowser and Carter Bradshaw make the pair of Apex tennis players awfully difficult to beat.
Cary found that to be true, falling to the Cougars 6-3 in a Southwest Wake Athletic Conference match Tuesday at Dunham Park.
Bowser and Bradshaw, Apex’s No. 1 and 2 singles players respectively, each won their individual matches and also teamed up to topple their Imps’ doubles foes to help the Cougars improve to 7-1 in SWAC play and 7-2 overall.
Bowser, who defeated Michael Herberger 6-0, 6-1, said he has learned to pick his spots on when to unleash a powerful shot rather than let loose with each and every swing.
“I’m not trying to overpower everything,” said Bowser, one of the Cougars key seniors, along with Bradshaw, Kyle Klinek and Tanner Wilson. “I try to stick to my strength and that’s to play more of a finesse game.”
Bradshaw, meanwhile, isn’t as judicious when it comes to hitting rockets at his foes. Bradshaw’s hard-hitting style works just fine for him, as it did in a 6-2, 6-1 win over Luke Hader.
“I still have plenty of power, but I’m also playing smarter now,” said Bradshaw, mentioning that he and Bowser have known each other since sixth grade.
Apex coach Lynn Thomas said she appreciates certain attributes of both players.
“Cole’s overall game is very pure in that he’s successful on both serves and volleys,” Thomas said. “Carter is a lion on the court, he’ll just never give up.”
They also complement each other quite well in doubles play as they did in a thorough 8-1 defeat of Herberger and Justin Pham.
Cary coach Janet Trotter saw her team’s record fall to 2-7 in the SWAC, but she was still upbeat about the Imps performance overall.
“It would have been great to win, but we’ve improved a lot,” said Trotter, who got singles wins from No. 5 Pham and No. 6 Noah Jabusch. “We’re playing better overall and have freshman players with a bright future.”
Trotter was referring in part to No. 3 singles player Dylan Ramey, though Klinek handled the Imp 6-2, 6-1.
Klinek and Wilson were victorious in the day’s marathon match, outlasting Hader and Will Lake 9-8, 8-6 in No. 2 doubles.