9th straight postseason for Melrose
Published May 31, 2019
By JENNIFER GENTILE
MELROSE—For their ninth straight year, the Melrose Red Raider tennis team are returning to the Div. 2 playoffs. Melrose clinched a post season, plus second place in the Middlesex League Freedom division, following a victory over Wilmington on Friday, May 24.
A day before, a close 3-2 loss to Burlington gave the league title to their rivals, but it was a competitive match. Says coach Matt Williams, “Even though we were on the losing end of it, it was a great atmosphere and a great experience for our team.”
Their victory over Wilmington was a continuation match halted due to rain from the previous week. Melrose showed plenty of power with victories behind Henry MacDonnell, who enjoyed a 3 set win, 1-6, 6-3 and 7-5 and Griffin Castergine who won in third singles. Melrose’s second doubles team of Tyler Janzen and Russell Darwin won, 6-2, 6-2. Falling just short were Zac Zibaitis in second singles and the first doubles Jack Summersby and Nick Koen, who lost 6-4, 6-4.
Williams notes the continuous effort of one upperclassmen in particular. “We have been lead by our two senior captains Jack and Henry, but Russell Darwin has been a tremendous leader for us. He hustles, does the right thing and wants to see everyone do well.”
As he helps the team prepare for another run in the Div. 2 North field, Williams would like to see the team focus on execution. “We have little time off before the state tournament, and we’re just trying to get better at serving and volleys and thinking about what is the best shot to hit at a given time. We look forward to the state tournament and we’ll do our best to make a good run.”
Pairings will be released today, Friday, May 31 by the MIAA. Fans are encouraged to visit www.miaa.net for information or visit our social media pages.