SWAMPSCOTT — The Swampscott and Weston High boys’ tennis teams may both be Division 3, since the schools have a similar number of male students.
But the Wildcats are a Division 1 talent, according to Swampscott head coach Neil Whitehouse, and that was evident yesterday when visiting Weston shut out the Big Blue, 5-0, in the North Division 3 semifinals.
“Take nothing away from Weston, but this was heartbreaking in the sense that, in my mind, they’re Division 1 but because they have 700 students they play in our Division,” said Whitehouse, whose team finished the season 18-2. “But their program is made up of schooled players who are USTA (United States Tennis Association) players. The comparison of competitive levels between us and them would be like putting us up against a Division 1 team.”
The Wildcats (15-2) swept the doubles matches as Alec Been/Will Talcott defeated Swampscott’s Sam Crimmins/Matt Gilberg, 6-3, 6-3, at first doubles while Joe Wagner/Jack Fleckner took down Ian Crimmins/Mike Pindrus 6-2, 6-2. Sam Crimmins and Gilberg looked as if they would take over momentum during their match, but a great diving return by Been seemed to stymie the Big Blue duo.
Been’s miraculous shot was one of many hit by the Wildcats yesterday. Second singles Leland Ko hit a viscous, through-the-legs return against Swampscott senior Val Temin in a match Ko won, 6-0, 6-2, while third singles senior Ben Spector didn’t miss much in his 6-0, 6-0 victory over sophomore Sam Carmosino.
“We play tough schools throughout the season,” said Wildcats head coach George Conlin. “We played Wayland, the defending Division 2 champs, twice and we (split). I think we learned a lot in that loss. We’re seasoned because we’ve played tough matches.”
Weston completed the sweep when Ethan Chen was finally able to defeat Big Blue freshman Matt Jacobs 5-7, 6-3 and 10-5 in the tiebreak. It was a fantastic match with two extremely gifted players. Jacobs is the Big Blue’s most experienced player, having been on the courts since he was seven and his skill showed despite the loss, which featured his first lost set of the season.