By BRIAN JENNINGS
Each win was followed by a loss, but the Blue Knight tennis team survived the heart of the conference schedule. The Knights out-lasted Conard, 4-3, before falling to Simsbury, 6-1. Southington rebounded with a 7-0 sweep against NW Catholic before falling to Glastonbury, 5-2.
Coach Tony Mauro said that the team has gotten better down the stretch of the regular season, but doubles still need some fine-tuning.
“Doubles to singles is how chess is to checkers,” he said. “The players don’t realize that it’s a lot easier to learn tactically than it is to learn physically. Physical things require muscle memory that doesn’t happen in one minute. We have to play wiser, be patient, and create our opportunities.”
Jake Chasse was the only one to go 4-0 for the week in different spots of the singles lineup. With the team trailing 2-3 against Conard, Chasse anchored the comeback with a 6-4, 6-4 win at No. 2 singles. Kevin Chudy-Jon Kryzanski completed the comeback with a win at No. 2 doubles.
Matt Balaoing lost his doubles match against Simsbury, but went 3-0 in singles play. Chudy-Kryzanski and Ben Chasse both finished the week, 2-2.
Mike Balaoing (1-1), Erik Kryzanski-Mike Listro, and Sam Johnson-Mike Loose were the only others to capture wins throughout the week.
“I’m pleased that they’re progressing, but it’s at a slow rate and we’re running out of time,” said Mauro. “As long as they’re giving me effort though…It doesn’t mean we’re going to win, but that’s the W I’m looking for. I’m looking for no-quit effort from the first point to the last.”
Southington is currently 10th in Class LL and fourth in the Blue Division of the CCC Central (1-3).
With six games remaining in the regular season, the Knights (9-5) will have another tough week with games against
Simsbury (9-1), Avon (6-4), Newington (8-3), and RHAM (7-3).