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2010 All-SCV Boys Tennis Singles Team: Two for one

Ben Inchalik and Tyler Gottshall went undefeated in league play as singles players

Posted: June 16, 2010 9:03 p.m.
Updated: June 17, 2010 4:55 a.m.

Valencia’s Ben Inchalik went undefeated in Foothill League play in 2010. He teamed with Tyler Gottshall for the postseason and tied for the deepest run of any team in Santa Clarita Valley history, making it to the CIF-Southern Section Division II quarterfinals as a doubles team. Inchalik is our co-All-Santa Clarita Valley Boys Tennis Singles Pla...

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We will never really know who the best singles player in the Foothill League was this year.

If Tyler Gottshall and Ben Inchalik stayed as singles players instead of forming a doubles team in the Foothill League finals, we might have gotten that answer.

The two combined to go 54-0 in league individual matches this year, yet the sole reason a loss does not appear in that record is because the two happened to be on the same team.

Now, despite wildly successful seasons from both players, the two end their high school careers on a cliffhanger.

Because of this undeniable dominance, and the unanswerable question the two have left us to answer, the only thing to do is acknowledge Tyler Gottshall and Ben Inchalik as the All-Santa Clarita Valley Co-Singles Players of the Year.

The two began the 2010 season as they ended it, the premier players on a Foothill League champion Vikings squad. Gottshall, for the second straight season, started at the No. 1 singles slot, with Inchalik following him as the No. 2.

Shortly thereafter, the pair’s play rendered any onlooker incapable of distinguishing between which of the duo was Valencia’s best player.

The two dominated, and by the second run through of league matches, it was apparent that the only competition that either player would face all year would be each other, in practice.

Perhaps the only determining factor between each’s accomplishments is the amount of games each would drop while sweeping their opponents. If Gottshall won a set 6-3, Inchalik would make sure to beat that same player by a score of 6-1, and such friendly competition would raise the game of each as the season progressed.

The two’s limbo carried on out of school as well, as the two trained together on the weekends at Mountain Gate Country Club in Los Angeles.

Whether it was playing tennis, training or even hanging out after school, the two were undeniably inseparable all season.
It wasn’t until the last league match of the season, however, that Gottshall and Inchalik officially became linked.

On April 30, Valencia head coach Annie Kellogg paired the two to play doubles against Golden Valley, a move that all but guaranteed that the seniors would play doubles in the Foothill League and CIF tournaments.

Yet, the performance of Gottshall and Inchalik as a doubles team made Kellogg’s call worth it.

The league’s two best singles players would raise their game to the level of Foothill League champions and All-CIF as a doubles team.

In fact, it took eventual CIF-Southern Section Division II champions T.J. Dura and Chris Lord of Brentwood to end the pair’s season, defeating the senior Vikings 6-3, 6-4 in the quarterfinals.

Two separate 27-0 seasons and one joint quarterfinals appearance in the CIF-SS individuals later, Gottshall and Inchalik stand as the league’s best.


* * * * * * * *


J.R. Macalutas — Sophomore, Valencia
The sophomore lefty dominated his opponents in league, solidifying the Valencia singles lineup and winning the Foothill League title at year’s end. Macalutas used his powerful groundstrokes to go 29-1 in league play, dropping the lone set of the season to Jason Ferlianto in a tiebreak.

Jason Ferlianto — Junior, Canyon
Ferlianto anchored the Cowboys for the third straight year, losing only to Valencia’s stellar singles lineup and compiling a 23-7 record in league contests. Ferlianto enjoyed immense postseason success as well, finishing in second place at the Foothill League tournament and taking Canyon to the CIF-Southern Section playoffs.

Baron Von Kessler — Sophomore, West Ranch
Von Kessler was the consistent threat on a West Ranch team that relied heavily on its doubles squads to win games. The Wildcat’s grinding style troubled opponents, and he compiled a 21-9 record in his sophomore season and finished third in the Foothill League tournament.

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