Monday, May 25, 2015

Norton Tennis' Tough Loss to Dedham; Jenkins takes home a victory

   The Norton Lancer Boys Tennis Team lost a tough out-of-league match against the Dedham Marauders on May 7th, 2015 by a score of 1-4 at Dedham High School in Dedham MA.  This was due simply to being outplayed and outworked by the Marauders team. This was the first match for the Lancers as they have never faced the Marauders before this year. The only triumph on the day was for senior captain Brandon Jenkins. Although Jenkins came away with the victory, it was not enough for a Norton victory.

    Norton did not play its best  during this match. They lacked motivation and were outplayed during their matches. They gave up easy points and didn't put away shots when necessary. Many of the players from Norton simply gave up during the match and put in no effort or fight towards a victory. They played with no passion or heart and it ultimately resulted in their loss. 

   Norton made major switches in their lineup for this match. While missing one of the two members of the first doubles team, Sean Murphy, they needed to make switches to accommodate the loss. Their traditional second singles player, Alex Belinsky, moved down to first doubles, while third singles, sophomore Devin Kalnicki, moved up one spot to second singles. With the second doubles team of John Munger and Derek Kalnicki on a hot streak, they stayed in their spot at second doubles. First alternate Liam Lenhart entered the match jumping all the way up to third singles to round out the lineup for the Norton team. However, the change in lineup had no major effect on the outcome of the match as it ended in a Norton loss.

" It was a tough loss, but hopefully we will put up a better fight next time we face them", said John Munger

 The lineup for the match against Dedham was as follows:
First Singles- Brandon Jenkins(N) vs. Greg Gentleman(D)
Second Singles- Devin Kalnicki(N) vs. Brendan Flis(D)
Third Singles- Liam Lenhart(N) vs. Noah Littman(D)
First Doubles- Alex Belinsky and Robbie Douglas(N) vs. Kameel Rachmani and Saud Shah(D)
Second Doubles- John Munger and Derek Kalnicki(N) vs. Ben Springer and Ryan Heilman(D)

  The Dedham Marauders played excellent against the Lancers. They played best at the net. Finishing volleys and ending points with massive overheads was the way in which they took home the victory. The first doubles team for Dedham were incredible at the net putting away any ball that came to them.  They were a team with many great servers as well. Unlike the Lancer team that struggles with getting first serves in, they managed to make very few double faults and got the majority of their first serves in play. First singles for Dedham, Greg Gentleman, almost always got his first serve in. Another great aspect of their play was the power that they had behind their groundstrokes. They managed to return the ball with great speed and control. This was a major factor in the Dedham win.

     Jenkins was the only winner on the day beating tenth grader Greg Gentleman. Jenkins lost by a score of 2-6 in the first set, as he was getting used to the play of the young player out of Dedham. He came back strong beating Gentleman handsomely by a score of 6-1. Jenkins had the advantage throughout the match with his quick feet and ability to get to almost all the balls hit to his side.  In the third set, Jenkins beat Gentleman 7-6. Jenkins came away with the victory by causing Gentleman to make simple mistakes. Gentleman gave away easy points and it set the course for the rest of the match. Jenkins plays a simple game against his opponents. He normally will return back to his opponent and wait for them to make a mistake. He rarely hits hard winners.  This is what happened during his match against Gentleman. Jenkins worked hard to come away with the "W". 

 Jenkins said, " Mentally, I was all there and that really helped in my win."

   After this loss, it brings their record to 1-9. They will play Holliston on May 11th. The Lancers are hoping for a victory against the Panthers as they return to their home courts to play. They will need to start winning if they hope to make it into the Tri-Valley league Tournament. 

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