Boys tennis: Trumbull Eagles buoyed by comeback victory
The Trumbull High boys tennis team made its largest comeback in recent program history, defeating the Westhill Vikings 4-3 after a 0-3 start on April 29.
The Eagles are poised at making a run that will land them a second consecutive place in the FCIAC playoffs — and a third consecutive shot at the Class LL tournament.
“We started off very strong, but we got too much in our comfort zone once we reached the second set which gave them too many opportunities,” said Rushil Ahuja, who played No. 3 doubles with sophomore Matt Nusom. “When we realized we were the deciding factor, we stepped up our game allowing us to close out the match and get the win.”
They started the third set being down 1-2, but after a talk with coaches Vanessa Pardo and Laura Santelli, they got their heads back into the game and finished with a bang, defeating the Vikings 6-2 in the third set.
“Today we had a grueling match with a team that has very talented players all around,” said senior co-captain Nick Marchenko after his hard fought 7-6 (7-2) 6-4 victory over Westhill’s Jordan Soifer at number one singles. “We knew the importance of this match and how critical it was for us to pull through. We had confidence we could do it, and the entire team executed.”
Trumbull’s No. 2 doubles team of senior Anubhav Dhar and junior Lalith fared well against Nikhil Arora and Neev Suryawanshi, winning 7-5, 6-2.
“The first set was a bit tight, but after we won it, I think we loosened up and started playing even better tennis,” Gannavaram said.
With three hard-fought Trumbull losses at singles from Nihal Wadhwa, Mike Catuccio and Ben Bello, the score was tied at 3-3, and it fell to the third doubles match to secure victory for the Eagles.
“We’ve had some struggles as a team being mentally ready, but today everyone was able to stick to the game plan and really stay positive,” said sophomore George James after he teamed up with senior co-captain Anush Sureshbabu to win the No. 1 doubles match 7-6 6-2.
“I think our confidence was really important in the match today, especially since the momentum kept changing.”
Trumbull earlier defeated Masuk High, 7-0,
Singles: Nick Marchenko (T) def. Amaan Ashab 6-1, 6-0; Lalith Gannavarum (T) def. Kevin Tran 6-0, 6-3; Nihal Wadhwa (T) def. Kyle Weiss 7-6, 6-4; Ben Bello (T) def. Rohit Sureshanand 6-3, 6-3. Doubles: George James/Anush Sureshhabu (T) def. Greg Miller/Manny Esmeraldo 6-1, 6-1; Matt Nusom/Rushil Ahuja (T) def. Soorya Chenthilnathan/Krish Vijay 7-6, 6-3; Max Hutchins/Jamie Tamarkin (T) def. Karma Vijay/Justin Sadownick 6-4, 6-4.