By Nick Curcuru
---- — The Lynnfield girls tennis team gave Manchester Essex its toughest match of the season on Wednesday.
The Pioneers became the first team to take a match from the Hornets this season, but even in their most closely contested match of the spring, the Hornets were still their dominant selves coming away with a 4-1 win at the Manchester Memorial Tennis Courts and improving their record to a perfect 7-0 on the season.
“Lynnfield was tough but we were strong and played very very hard today,” head coach Phil Logsdon said.
The Hornets were led by their top three singles players on Wednesday in No. 1 Brittany Collens, No. 2 Michelle Fuca and No. 3 Kendall McCormick. The New Mexico State bound Collins cruised through her match 6-0, 6-1. Fuca, on the other hand, was equally impressive using a deadly drop shot to pick up a 6-0, 6-2 win while McCormick dispatched her foe 6-3, 6-1.
“Michelle had the drop shot working magically today and it was great to see,” Logsdon said. “Brittany was amazing to watch as usual and Kendall is a very patient player at the No. 3 spots. She looks for her spots and takes them when they’re there. All three singles players were great again.”
The Hornets two doubles tandem went up against a strong doubles unit for the Pioneers on Wednesday and they were more than up to the task.
Rachel Daley and Chanel Bullock held off a strong Lynnfield No. 1 doubles tandem picking up a 6-3, 7-6 win thanks to some nice work around the net. The No. 2 doubles tandem of Avery St. Sauvere and Molly Carlson also delivered some strong work at the net but ultimately dropped a 3-6, 1-6 decision in a match that was much closer than the score would indicate.
“The doubles were hard fought matches today,” Logsdon said. “Both teams were trading blows around the net and there were a lot of long, hard fought points. Both teams were fearless and it made for some exciting tennis.”
At 7-0 the Hornets are currently cruising and look to once again be a player in the Division 3 state title race. The Hornets won the title in 2011 and fell to Bedford in the sectional quarters last season. This season, Manchester Essex is taking it one match at a time but wants to finish strong.
“Hopefully we can keep it rolling for a while,” Logsdon said. “We want to finish strong. It has been an exciting start, this is a very spirited team and the girls are very supportive of one another. And of course they are very talented and love playing the game and it shows because they’re always working to get better. Those are good foundations to build on.”