PORT CHESTER, N.Y. — Registering enough victories to qualify for the NEPSAC Team Tennis Championships and capturing the FAA title are among Greenwich Academy’s goals and as the results show, it’s on pace to cross each achievement off its wish list by season’s end.
Greenwich Academy’s scheduled home match against St. Luke’s School was played at Sound Shore Indoor Tennis Center due to Monday’s rainy weather, but the way GA has played so far this spring, it doesn’t matter what venue, or surface it tests its skills on.
Consistent in both singles and doubles play, Greenwich Academy served up another victory, posting a 5-1 win against St. Luke’s in an FAA matchup. With the triumph, the Gators raised their record to 6-0 overall and 4-0 in FAA play.
“The team is playing really well, we seem to get better every match,” GA coach Elizabeth Schrohe said. “They’re just doing a great job.”
The victors won all four singles matches and split the two doubles matchups. The No. 3 doubles match was not completed due to a curfew on the courts. Senior Georgia Ryan, who will play tennis at Pomona College (Pomona Pitzer) in the fall, added another win to her ledger at first singles. The Gators’ top-seeded singles player notched a 6-0, 6-0 win over St. Luke’s Maddie Harris.
Ryan closed out the first set with an ace and cross-court, forehand winner. She converted a break point to seize the opening game of the second set and never looked back.
“It was a good day for me, everything was working and I was lucky with that,” Ryan said. “I think the team is the best that it’s been in the three years that I’ve played.”
GA’s No. 1 singles player is pleased to be back with the squad, after taking her junior year off to focus on a challenging academic junior year and to compete in some matches on the USTA junior circuit.
“It’s really fun to be a part of the team, it was hard to decide whether or not to play last year,” Ryan said. “I like playing on teams. I find it a lot more fun and less challenging mentally. Everyone on our team is really uplifting.”
No. 2 singles saw Greenwich Academy junior Emma Carney win her match against Audrey Magnusen, 7-6, 6-3. Carney, also a member of GA’s national championship winning squash squad, has excelled at every singles spot she’s played.
“I played consistent, I played a good tiebreaker and the second set was a little bit easier, but she didn’t let up,” Carney said. “They definitely all came out strong and all of the singles matches were good. I think our team is looking even stronger than last year.”
At third singles, Maddie Smith was victorious against Grace Fitzgibbon, 7-5, 6-0. Smith trailed 5-2 in the opening set, before staging a comeback.
“I slowed down, got it to 5-5, then I came back and won 7-5,” said Smith, a freshman. “I just focused more and slowed down my strokes. I knew if I stayed in the point and stayed more consistent, it would be easier.”
Freshman Lily Martucci of GA took her fourth singles match against Sadie Vehslage, 6-1, 6-0.
“Our singles lineup is great and it’s deep across all four players,” Schrohe said. “We’re very excited and blessed to have those four players.”
In doubles competition, seniors Annabel Thrasher and Andrea Jemiolo teamed up for a 6-3, 6-0 win against the Storm’s Carolina and Amelie Warneryd at the No. 1 spot. Thrasher usually competes with senior Karina Toub at first doubles, but Toub was out sick, so Jemiolo — a doubles player anyway — stepped into the top spot on Monday.
“Andrea has a strong first serve and we were just trying to figure out our strategy in the first set,” Thrasher said. “We were both making errors, but in the second set, we both just played our game and did our thing.”
Said Jemiolo: “Our team is looking pretty strong. We’re undefeated so far and it is looking good for winning FAAs and making New Englands.”
St. Luke’s win came at second doubles, where Amelia Heffern/Caroline Pellegrino came back to beat Kate Miele and Heather Bienstock, 3-6, 6-1, 10-5. The Storm squad’s record stands at 2-2 on the season.
“Everyone played really competitive tennis,” St. Luke’s coach Brinley Ehlers said. “GA is alway strong and I don’t think the score was indicative of how close the match was. “Our No. 2 singles player was out, so it shifted our whole lineup, but GA is a very strong team. I was proud of how we played.”
At third doubles, Tyleigh Zammitt and Georgia Rosenberg of St. Luke’s won the first set against Antonia Packard/Kathryn Gregory, 7-5, but the match was not completed due to time limitations on the court.
AIMING FOR TITLES
“We are hoping to win the FAA title and get a high seeding at New Englands,” Ryan said. “Hopefully, we can go as far as we can in the New England Tournament.”
The Gators should be challenged in the next couple of weeks. They still have to play Sacred Heart Greenwich, Hopkins School (defending FAA champion) and Hotchkiss School.
“Sacred Heart is always a ton of fun to play,” Thrasher said. “Hotchkiss is always tough as well. That’s our next step.”
GREENWICH ACADEMY 5, ST. LUKE’S 1
Singles: Georgia Ryan (GA) def. Maddie Harris 6-0, 6-0; Emma Carney (GA) def. Audrey Magnusen 7-6 (3), 6-3; Maddie Smith (GA) def. Grace Fitzgibbon 7-5, 6-0; Lily Martucci (GA) def. Sadie Vehslage 6-1, 6-1. Doubles: Annabel Thrasher/Andrea Jemiolo (GA) def. Carolina Warneryd/Amelie Warneryd 6-3, 6-0; Amelia Heffern/Caroline Pellegrino (SL) def. Kate Miele/Heather Bienstock 3-6, 1-6, 10-5.