Playing through exhaustion, Boys Tennis pulled through its matches with a 6-1 victory over Taft. Adding a win to its record, the team now remains undefeated through its first three games of the season.
Kevin Niu ’25 reflected on the atmosphere of the match. He believes the positive spirit and motivation from teammates and coaches helped the team play through mental and physical exhaustion after a tiring game the day before against a strong competitor, Brunswick.
Niu said, “I think yesterday’s game was actually worse than the other games because we were so tired because the game before we played against Brunswick was four or five hours and everyone lost their energy cheering and stuff. So this game was like our tired game in a way, a lot of us were exhausted, and we still won. I think [it’s] our spirit. Cheering. We cheer for each other really well. You know if we see someone win a point on another court, we like say let’s go and their name or you know some other sayings that we have. Our captains are pretty good at giving us motivation.”
Jeremy Liao ’24 shared a similar sentiment to Niu regarding the importance of positive energy amongst the players. Supporting one another is the key to defeating opponents, especially when the team is worn out from back-to-back games, according to Liao.
“Honestly, we were a little tired. We played Brunswick on Friday and that was one of the hardest games we played yet, and everyone was really tired. But I think despite that, our energy was still really high, and still supporting each other and staying in it,” said Liao.
Co-Captain Kian Burt ’24 believes that even a little motivation on the court in the heat of the moment can go a long way. Burt recalled a simple moment of support and camaraderie among his teammates prior to their successful play.
Burt said, “Kevin and Avery, two [Juniors] on the team, and it was right before the momentum shifted towards their favor. They were really just high-fiving each other, trying to get their energy up, and it was very nice for me to see. Great attitude.”
Due to inclement weather, the Taft match was moved indoor to the Snyder Center. Niu believes the dreary weather led to a lower morale as compared to the Brunswick matches.
“Outside is a lot better, but it was raining, so we had to move inside. But I mean it’s always a good, its never a bad spirit. There are always some cheers at least today. There was not a real reason to cheer that hard. I think there was a good spirit, but not as good as the Brunswick one because that one was way closer. Whenever the game is closer, the spirit is better,” said Niu.
Avery Zheng ’25 believes that the rainy conditions and continuation of the matches indoors may have been a fortunate occurrence for the team.
“We had an advantage because the Snyder courts are different because I think Taft practices outside on a hard court and inside Snyder it’s a track, so the ball moves really slow,” said Zheng.
Co-Captain Ethan Wong ’23 and Burt are looking ahead to the season’s upcoming matches. Both believe that despite the team’s hot start, it needs to continue developing its chemistry.
Wong said, “We still have a lack of chemistry between our team. We don’t have uniform communication. We are still lacking that, but overall, we have good chemistry and support one another.”
Burt added, “I think as a team we still need some [chemistry], at least for doubles. We are still trying to figure out which pairs work best, and I think during practice, we could structure it a bit differently to fit everyone’s needs as a player. And I think as the season goes on, we will get other people’s thoughts and improve practice.”
Boys Tennis will take on Milton on Friday in hopes of extending its undefeated record.