To their great relief, the Rye boys’ tennis team won their first match of the season against Harrison at home April 29. Six straight losses, many by 3-4 scores, meant there was a lot of pressure on them to win Friday, and the 5-2 win came none too soon.
To make matters worse, the Garnets had lost 3-4 to this same Harrison team two days earlier when a rain-suspended match from April 5 came down to a third-set tiebreaker. The second doubles team dropped it, 5-7.
Head coah Sue Dickson joked she was torn between hiring a yoga instructor or sports psychologist to help her kids relax. Instead, she switched things up a bit, shuffling some of the doubles teams, and it paid off.
“I was ready to try anything,” said Dickson. “I don’t know if we won because of those minor changes or because it was our time.”
Senior Co-Captain Keishi Goto is optimistic the victory will start the team on a winning streak, citing the team’s youth and inexperience. “They are good players with strong skills, they just need to get used to playing matches.”
Goto, at No. 1 singles, beat Michael Chen easily in the week’s two outings. Friday’s score was 6-3, 6-1. Grant DeBease had a more difficult time, going down 1-6, 2-6. Senior Co-captain Buck Reynolds, who has won six out of his seven matches, prevailed over Andy Smithline in three sets, 2-6, 7-5, 6-4. Reynolds said playing an opponent with such a similar game made it a tough, but satisfying match.
The doubles teams fared well, with Rye taking all but the number one pairing. In that tilt, Alfredo Holquin and Gustavo Martinez had trouble with their lefty opponent’s ground strokes and lost, 3-6, 3-6. Harry Boney and Will Friedman won at number two, 1-6, 6-3, 7-5; Harrison Janart and James Reid came through in straight sets, 7-6. 6-3; and Koske Tremmonte and Tucker Killian prevailed, 6-2. 7-5.
— Melanie Cane