Players Build off Intersectionals experience
James Maimonis, Communications and Engagement Coordinator | July 13, 2017
WESTBOROUGH, MA- Four of the top New England boys and girls from the 16s and 14s divisions were selected to compete in the annual Intersectional Team Championships, an L1 national tournament that pits USTA Sections against one another. From July 1-5, the boys and girls from the 16s competed in Shreveport, LA and the 14s championships were held in Auburn, AL. Both tournaments were played on clay.
Alexander Johansson, Director of Player Development New England Academy of Tennis, coached the 16s team, while Julian Ramirez-Luna, PTR New England Pro of the Year from the MAC Academy, led the 14s squad.
“It was a blast representing New England with this great group of young athletes,” Johansson said. "The experience gave me much insight as to our strengths and what we can improve as coaches and programs to prepare these young athletes even better for national level competition."
Lexi Kubas, Lana Mavor, Iris Gallo, Samantha Falcon, Nicholas Condos, Michael Karr, Daniel Milavsky and Christopher Li made up the 16s team. The 14s consisted of Nastasya Semenovski, Samantha Svendsen, Julia DeLuca, Riya Singh, Alex Finkelstein, Nathan Mao, Teddy Truwit and Pieter Breuker.
“This was the first time that I coached a team like this, and it was an honor for me to coach the 14s Intersectionals,” said Ramirez-Luna. “Everyone improved in a lot different areas of their game, and I was happy to see how everyone adjusted more and more during the week to the conditions while improving in every match.”
Each match consisted of nine positions: 3 boys’ and girls’ singles, 1 boys’ and girls’ doubles and 1 mixed.
Both teams took home 12th place overall out of 17 sections.
The 14s finished 1-3 in flight play with their lone win coming against Intermountain, 7-2. The team then went on to win both matches in its playoff flight, first against Intermountain once again, 5-4 and next to Northern, 5-4.
The 16s dropped their first two flight matches but bounced back with a 5-4 victory against Northern, thanks to a girls’ singles sweep. The team went on to lose both matches in their playoff flight against Intermountain and Middle States.
Despite the unfavorable results, players and coaches both took away positives from the experience.
"We left better than we arrived with respect, pride, and strengthened friendships that can last a lifetime," Johansson said.
Juniors continue their busy July with L3 National Tournaments, L1 and L5 National Clay Courts, Zone Team Championships (12s-16s) and National Team Championships (18s).