GENEVA – With two singles victories and one doubles win already in the books – but with the outcome of two other matches in doubt – the St. Charles North boys tennis team needed Dominick Amalraj to come through at No. 1 singles to clinch a 4-3 victory over Geneva on Tuesday.
He did, downing Nick Huang 6-2, 6-3, to cap the Upstate Eight Conference River Division victory.
“Nick played really well,” Amalraj said. “I don’t think I played my best. … I was kind of like out of it in my mind today. At a couple points, he really pressured me, but overall I played good.”
One of those points when Amalraj (7-1) was pressured was in the second set, when a fired-up Huang held serve to close within 5-3.
But Amalraj closed the match out with just four serves in the next game.
“I tried to stress getting my first serves in,” Amalraj said. “Usually when I do that, things go well.”
North coach Sean Masoncup said he likes what he’s seeing from his No. 1 player so far this season.
“Dom’s been playing great,” Masoncup said. “He’s really starting to pick up his game. … His backhand’s improved a ton. I think last year’s doubles experience really has helped his game. He’s able to take his punishing ground strokes and finish them at the net.”
The North Stars (2-2, 1-1 UEC River) also received singles wins from Grant Spellman and Matt Ernst and a crucial victory from freshman Matt Kramer and sophomore Tom Ninan at No. 4 doubles.
“We’re a young team,” Masoncup said. “We’ve got four freshmen up here, and this is going to be our type [of] year – it’s going to be a 4-3 match almost every time we play.”
The Vikings (5-2, 1-1) won three doubles matches, including a 6-1, 7-5 victory by John Potts and Ryan Doeckel at No. 1 doubles over Mitch Riggs and Keith Hedges.
“We played really well,” Potts said. “We came out the first set really strong. Then we let them get back in it a little bit in the second set, but we closed well.”
The victory kept the duo unbeaten on the season.
“I think we’re doing great,” Doeckel said. “We’re 7-0, haven’t lost yet. We’ve had a few close matches, but overall, we’re keeping it solid.”
Spencer Ankley and Peter Ogle teamed up to give Geneva a win at No. 2 doubles and Quade Spellman and Curran McQuillan pulled out a three-set victory at No. 3 doubles.