By Carolyn Maguire
The girls tennis team followed up their Union County Title with a 3-2 win against Livingston Oct. 1 at Tamaques Park. WHS won matches in third singles, first doubles and second doubles.
Senior Co-Capitan Samantha Hindes said: “We went in knowing Livingston is a really good tennis team. We had to be more aggressive if we were going to get the win.”
Coach Matt Varhley said, “We did a great job against a top 10 and I am very happy with the result.”
WHS fell behind early, when Livingston junior Nicole Russo defeated senior Marilyn Kowalski in first singles 6-1, 6-0. But senior Co-Captain Sarah Murphy responded and beat Livingston senior Eeshin Chang in third singles.
Murphy won the first three games of the first set, but dropped the next two. But she collected herself and won the next three games, to take the first set 6-2. Throughout the rest of the match, Murphy was able to capitalize on Chang’s mistakes and continued to break her serve until she won the second set 6-1.
Murphy said: “At counties, I didn’t play tennis like I usually do. Today, I was more aggressive and I feel like I deserved to win.”
In first doubles, junior Elizabeth Cusick and sophomore Julia Criscuolo defeated Livingston senior Jenna Kaufman and junior Nathalie Tran in straight sets, winning all but one game. They won 6-1, 6-0, putting WHS at a 2-1 lead.
Second doubles partners senior Taylor Ingber and sophomore Caroline King defeated Livingston’s sophomores Helen Chen and Deanna Tran 6-2, 6-3. After winning the first set, Ingber and King fell behind 0-1, but then quickly gained a 2-1 advantage. Despite their reaction, Chen and Tran continued to challenge until Ingber and King pulled ahead and won the second set 6-3. Their win solidified the match, giving WHS a 3-1 lead.
Hindes lost to Livingston junior Sharon Chen 2-6, 5-7 in second singles. After Hindes established an early lead in the second set, Chen rallied back to beat Hindes.
Said Hindes: “As a team, this win will give us the needed confidence to continue. It also showed us where we need to improve.”