Unbeaten tennis team preps for formidable foes
When it comes to playing winning tennis, the Parkland boys tennis program is like a tank in low gear, constantly moving forward and crushing everything.
Steady, reliable and most of all very good, the Trojans are having another outstanding season under coach Michael Hingston. Through six matches Parkland is 6-0.
Last week Parkland dismantled three schools - Emmaus, Easton and Moravian Academy - by a combined 21-0. So dominant were the Trojans that only two of the 21 matches went three sets. The toughest matches were against Emmaus. Number one singles player Dan Zolotarev lost the first set to Quinn Erk, but rebounded to win 3-6, 6-2, 6-4.
Zolotarev has “developed a good all-around game” and “has improved his volley this year and is willing to go to the net,” Hingston said.
Hingston continues to be impressed with Josh Thomas. Before the season’s third match, Thomas was not expected to figure prominently in the team’s plans. But Thomas had other ideas.
“He just believes in himself,” said Hingston. “He decided that whether people think he’s ready or not, he thinks he is. He’s just playing lights out. He has confidence and is a fiery player and a fierce competitor.”
After being named the number three player before the season’s third match, he was elevated to the second spot against Emmaus. In a tight and entertaining match against Emmaus’ Eddy Chow, Thomas won a 6-2, 4-6, 6-2 battle. The performance earned him another promotion - this time to the number one singles spot - against Easton and Moravian Academy. Thomas did not disappoint, dominating Easton’s Michael Martyak 6-0, 6-0 and beating Moravian Academy’s Will Menichelli 6-2, 6-0.
Fyodor D’Souza continues to develop his game and plays solid tennis game-in and game-out. His match against Emmaus’ Aidan Springs was thrilling tennis. The Parkland junior utilized his improved serve to outlast Springs 7-6, 7-6.
Former singles player Ankit Lenka is now providing Hingston with some valuable doubles play. Lenka, paired with the durable Lucas Lee, got the better of Emmaus’ Nic Gilboy and Gabe Huff in a number two match 7-5, 6-3. Even if they are periodically tested, Mridul Gupta and Josh Jaffe, along with Ee-Ning Ooi and Taehyuk Yang continue winning matches.
Stern competition is in the Trojans’ immediate future. Back-to-back battles with Southern Lehigh and Freedom this week will show Parkland just how good they are.