Winchester shows depth in eliminating Boston Latin in boys tennis

ARLINGTON – The 21st-seeded Boston Latin boys tennis team found an edge in No. 1 singles play, but a deeper No. 12 Winchester squad took care of business everywhere else in a Div. 1 state first-round matchup Tuesday night to move on with a 4-1 win at Crosby Courts.

Both doubles teams dominated their matches and Jeff Chen gutted out a comeback win in No. 3 singles play, pairing with Sam Sony’s rout in No. 2 singles action to lead the Red and Black (15-5).

They await the winner of Thursday’s matchup between No. 5 BC High and No. 28 Barnstable.

“Seeing the strength kind of in the middle-lower of the lineup is great (moving forward) in the postseason,” said Winchester head coach Mike Lauretano. “Good, strong wins lower in the lineup is always a good sign.”

No. 1 singles player Carl Stredicke started off his match strong, only for Boston Latin’s (8-9) Ethan Tran to win the last three games of the first set and six of the seven in the second set to win it (6-4, 6-1) for a chance at an upset.

Yet, the Red and Black overwhelmed the Wolfpack in the other four matches.
Winchester’s No. 1 doubles team of Jamie Binda-Dunn and Thomas Andrews played the quickest match of the day in defeating Aiden Zaphiris and Andrew Xue (6-0, 6-1). Sony’s match was nearly as quick, defeating Tony Nguyen by the same score in No. 2 singles.

“As a team we’re not just one person, we have an entire unit,” Sony said. “There’s always people supporting our team, even on the bench and on the courts. I think that’s very important for the win, as a collective whole.”

The Red and Black needed to take just one of the two remaining matches from there, which Chen delivered on by defeating Simon Chen (7-5, 6-2) behind a momentum-shifting comeback in the first set. He trailed 5-4 before rallying to a tie-breaker win and, eventually, a lead as large as 5-1 in the second set.

“(Chen) always hangs tough, so that’s actually why I have him there,” Lauretano said. “There are a lot of third singles where you never really know what you’re going to get. He’s kind of a jack-of-all trades.”

“He’s a solid player, you can always count on him,” Sony added. “He’s also our loudest cheerer. He supports us well and he plays well.”

The team win was already secured, but it didn’t stop the No. 2 doubles team of Raffi Parsegian and Max Griffin from maintaining momentum with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Boston Latin’s Gabe Huang and Edwin Chen.

Doubles play has been a strength for Winchester.

“We usually have pretty good depth, so doubles is a good spot for us most of the time,” Lauretano said. “Good aggression, good returns, putting serves in – just good, aggressive, simple doubles play. That’s kind of what we’re trying to do.”

Boston Latin's Tony Nguyen returns the ball during his match with Winchester's Sam Sony on Tuesday. (Chris Christo/Boston Herald)
Boston Latin’s Tony Nguyen returns the ball during his match with Winchester’s Sam Sony on Tuesday. (Chris Christo/Boston Herald)

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