RL finished another undefeated season in league matches this season, its fourth in five years and won its fifth consecutive ISL title—an incredible feat considering the level of competition and talent in the league. This team was often challenged this season, but it refused to lose and always responded well under pressure, which is the trademark of an experienced team. Bill Parcells once said, “You are what your record says you are,” and we are proud of our record.
During this historic run, RL finished with an outstanding 74 and 1 record against other ISL schools. The team went to three New England Class B Finals and was crowned champion in 2013, a first in RL history. RL tennis teams have won many matches these last few years, but what makes me the most proud is that they have won them with class and humility.
With five seniors on the team, RL Tennis Team sadly turned a page yesterday after its last match of the season against St. Sebastian. Joey Haig I (5 years on varsity), Christian O’Connor I (4 years), Hamza Chaudhry I (3 years), Marc Scemama I (2 years) and Oliver Hermann I (1 year) have played a significant role in what I call “RL golden years.” These seniors, with the help of many other players now long gone (Carl DeFranco ’11, Mikey Trainin ’12, Perry Hart ’12, JB Gough ’13, Cam Ferguson ’13, Andrew Wang ’14) but not forgotten and a few others who will still be with us next year, have set records that will stand the test of time.
I will remember fondly every senior on this team, but I need to give special recognition to two seniors for the crucial roles they have played in all of our successes. Joey Haig (Captain) who was League MVP last year and could win the honor again this year and Christian O’Connor (Captain) are, simply put, “irreplaceable.” Their passion for the game, their dedication to the team, their leadership and attitude on the courts are unparalleled. I am forever grateful.
As other ISL teams celebrate the end of an era, we look to the future. Harris Foulkes IV, who played third singles this year and doubles #1, is the only player on our team to go undefeated in singles in the ISL and in the New England Championship—a remarkable achievement. Siva Emani III, who is our most improved player, won key matches for us in singles and will be an important player next year. Ben Kieff II took advantage of the few opportunities he had to contribute to the team and should continue to improve during the off-season. It will be strange not to see many players from the 2015 team across the net next year, but it is also exciting and rejuvenating.
I want to thank the parents for their continuous support, especially the captains’ mothers, Sue Haig and Dianne O’Connor. Their work behind the scenes is a crucial part of our success. I will miss these seniors a lot, but I will miss their parents as well