SEBRING – Tennis season is off to a great start for the Sebring Blue Streaks. The boys and girls teams blanked the Kathleen Red Devils in their season opener on Monday. The Blue Streaks won the boys match by a score of 7-0 and the girls match 7-0.
In the girls No. 1 singles match, Sebring’s Mara Pepper eased past Kathleen’s Gabriella Shinglen by scores of 6-0, 6-0, at No. 2 singles, Blue Streak Kiersten DeJesus defeated Autumn Richards 6-0, 6-0 and in matches 3 thru 5 Katherine Pham, Kosha Upadhyaya and Stephanie Beiner all won by default for Sebring.
At No. 1 doubles, Sebring’s Ryleah Myhre and Emily Joseph beat Shingle and Richards 6-0, 6-0, while Pepper and DeJesus won No. 2 doubles by default.
“We have a young team with only one senior,” said veteran Sebring girls tennis coach Janie Hollinger. “We have several players that will find themselves in the top five for the first time and they are very excited for the season.”
Sebring swept the boys competition as Dhruv Manik outlasted Kathleen’s Rick Suarez-Whitt at No. 1 singles, 3-6, 6-1, 10-4. Blue Streak Pranav Ananthan defeated Isaiah Glenn 6-0, 6-4 at No. 2 singles, Gavin Szoka won No. 3 singles over Cobi Turner, 6-0, 6-0, Rohin Patel eased past Red Devil Alex Gage at No. 4 singles, 6-1, 6-0, and Trace Lackey won No. 5 singles over James Chamberland by scores of 6-0, 6-0.
In No. 1 doubles, Manik and Ananthan dominated Kathleen’s Glenn and Turner, 6-0, 6-0, and Lackey and Szoka crushed Gage and Chamberland at No. 2 doubles, 6-1, 6-0.
“The boys team started the season with a convincing win over district opponent Kathleen,” said Coach Ryan Myhre. “Sebring confirmed its solid level of play from last year and determination to be a dominant force in the district as well as in the state. It was a windy night for our first match, but our guys have been practicing how to play in the wind and came out ready to face both the elements and a good team from Kathleen.”
The depth of the Sebring Blue Streak’s team was evident in its dominance at the remaining singles slots and only losing one game in both doubles matches.
“It was a good way to start the season,” said Myhre. “We are looking forward to getting better and competing at the highest level each time we step on the court as a team.”
The Sebring boys and girls will compete in the Valentine Tournament at the Country Club of Sebring on Saturday.