Mepham’s served up plenty of aces on its way to victories in each of its first eight matches on the tennis court.
With just three matches remaining, the Lady Pirates were battling Plainedge for the top spot in Conference III-B and already own a victory over the Lady Red Devils, a 4-3 thriller on Sept. 22. Mepham squeaked by when its second and fourth doubles teams pulled out late victories. Since that close battle, the Lady Pirates have won a combined 25 of the 28 matches against their last four opponents, including a 6-1 decision over Valley Stream North on Oct. 3.
While the Plainedge win, in particular, showed off some of Mepham’s depth, the team has also proven to be versatile with several players shuffling around and still staying on the winning course. In a 7-0 win over Valley Stream Central on Sept. 24, a match No. 2 singles player senior Corryn Chaimowitz missed, the Lady Pirates didn’t skip a beat. Senior Nicole Madison moved up to second singles and won in straight sets (6-3, 6-2), while freshman Lindsey Marshall filled in at first doubles and contributed to another victory. “She moved up to first doubles and she hustles,” coach Claire Cohen said of Marshall. “She played the net well.”
Junior Lena Diller, in her third season as the No. 1 singles player, is among the most consistent and technically sound players on the roster, posting a 5-3 mark. Chaimowitz has ripped off wins in all of her seven matches and lost just one of the 14 sets in total. “She has a [strong] forehand and is very smart,” Cohen said. “She knows where to put the ball.”
Shari Forman, who transferred from Kennedy, is 6-2 and has already matched her win total from last season. Madison has moved from singles to doubles and teams with senior Tess Larsen on the Lady Pirates’ top unit. The second doubles team pairs seniors Ilana Maurer and Michele Moryc, while sophomore Aly Davila and junior Tracy Hanes, in her first varsity campaign, have performed well as the third doubles team.
Along with winning a key match to push Mepham over the top against Plainedge, the fourth doubles team of junior Sabrina Garone and Julia Lunavictoria has shown a big improvement. “The girls are very conscientious and very good team members and I think that helps,” Cohen said.
The Lady Pirates close regular season play Friday at home against Long Beach at 4:30 p.m.