The Huntington High School boys’ tennis team was dominated by underclassmen this past spring, with only one senior on the roster.
Coached by Jamie Fishlow and captained by senior Connor Dougal, the Blue Devil squad included 10 players. The team compiled a 4-6 record in league play and went 5-9-1 overall.
“Unfortunately, we did not have a consistent season,” Fishlow said. “We lost many close matches due to a lack of experience throughout the lineup. However, despite the small roster size, the members of the team did a good job of being present at practices and meets.”
Huntington’s top players included freshman Sean Hassett (9-6 overall in singles); juniors Jason Verville (7-6-1 in singles and doubles), Matt Girimonti (10-4 in singles and doubles), John Segreti (9-5 in doubles), Andrew Knowles (7-5 in doubles) and Justin Lokos (8-5 in doubles); and senior Connor Dougal (10-5 in singles and doubles).
“Sean Hassett is a strong and powerful player who can develop with more experience,” Fishlow said. “Matt Girimonti has untapped potential. With work, he can be a stronger player. Jason Verville is a multi-skilled lefty with potential. Justin Lokos has a good game and with more consistency he can be very successful. John Segreti worked hard to improve. Andrew Knowles is willing to work very hard to improve.”
Ryan Knowles also displayed glimpses of just how talented he is as he regularly vied in No. 2 singles (4-6 overall), but also played a pair of matches in both No. 1 and No. 3 singles. “Ryan developed into one of our team’s best players,” Fishlow said.
Huntington’s five victories came in matches against Walt Whitman (4-3 and 4-3), Kings Park (6-1 and 6-1) and Center Moriches (6-1). The Blue Devils and Brentwood battled to a 3-3 tie.
Among Huntington’s losses were tight 4-3 contests with Smithtown East, Hauppauge, and John H. Glenn. The Blue Devils went 6-7 overall in matches that went three sets.
“The team worked hard to improve its skills, fitness and match play strategy,” Fishlow said. “We were stronger in doubles, where we won 27 out of 45 matches.”
Sophomore Josh Bailin had the unenviable task of facing the opposing team’s best player in No. 1 singles, but he endured. Sophomore Ricky Rongo had five matches at No. 4 singles and also went 5-3 in No. 2 and No. 3 doubles.
“We are only losing one member of the team to graduation,” Fishlow said. “With the goals of improving skills and match play, I anticipate that we could contend for a league title next spring.”