Division 3 boys tennis: Belchertown outlasts Monument, reaches championship game

For the Gazette
Published: 6/7/2016 9:39:41 PM

BELCHERTOWN — Just a few minutes after the fourth-seeded Monument Mountain boys tennis team tied Tuesday’s Western Massachusetts Division 3 Tournament semifinal with a clutch third-set win in second singles, No. 1 Belchertown’s first doubles flipped the script, earning their team the 3-2 win.

Belchertown coach Zach Siano was “feeling really confident” as he watched his first doubles duo of Alec Morgado and Dennis Lelic battle Monument’s Kevin Costello and Rafael Guttierez with the score tied.

“First doubles has been our staple all year,” Siano said. “I look to them to kind of carry us and they’ve done that the whole year.”

Morgado and Lelic won the match 7–6 (7–4), 6–4 to send the Orioles to the championship.

Belchertown (15-6) will face Mount Greylock (12–1) in the finals at 4 p.m. Friday at Lee High School.

The Mounties, who are making their fourth straight trip to the championship, beat Belchertown in last year’s finals.

“I’m glad to get another crack at them,” Siano said.

Monument finished 8-3.

“A couple of shots either way, and we could have won,” Monument coach Marshall Fisher said. “I’m very proud of our team and very proud of the other team.”

The Spartans came out on top in first and second singles.

At first singles, Monument’s Kadin Shafiroff won the first set 6–2 and was up 2–0 in the second set when Trent Zulkiewicz forfeited due to a knee injury.

In second singles, Alec Goffin won 6–3, 3–6, 6–1 over Belchertown senior captain Ryan Kearney.

In second doubles, Orioles Noah Pare and Cyrus Raines earned a 6–0, 7–5 victory.

“I knew it was going to be a coin-flip match coming into it for us. I was happy we finally, for once this year, came out on the right side of a 3–2 matchup,” said Siano.

Five of the Orioles’ six losses this season have been by a 3-2 score.

Siano wasn’t sure of Zulkiewicz’s status for Friday’s final.

“The state that he was in during the game, I think he might have just tapped out at that point knowing he didn’t want to further injure himself and kind of save himself for Friday,” Siano said.

Making it to Friday’s match, Siano said, has been his team’s goal all year.

“They don’t want another second-place trophy. We’ve already got one of those,” Siano said. “We’re looking to take home the first this time.”


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