Pioneers seeing net gains on tennis court

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Tori Lindh stretching to hit the ball.
Tori Lindh stretches to make a play on the ball during a recent 5-4 win over West.

MANCHESTER, NH – Following a lost 2020 season, the The Trinity High School girls tennis team returned to the court this season with a couple experienced tennis players, one standout golfer and handful of players new to the sport.

“We really have a new team, for the most part,” said third-year head coach Derick Alexandere. “We had a couple people coming back, but some people hadn’t touched a racket before, so we’re really pleased with their progress.”

As one might expect, team and individual results have varied due to inexperience, but the Pioneers have battled hard and showed steady improvement though their first few matches, including a 5-4 win over crosstown-rival Manchester West on Monday.

Clare Tran led the winning effort with an 8-0 blanking of West’s Helena Jackson. King fell, 8-6, Molly Bacon lost, 8-1, and Harley Plasz was defeated, 8-4, but MC Neville and Tori Lindh drew the Pioneers even with 8-2 and 8-3 wins, respectively.

Then Tran and King earned an 8-6 victory on the top doubles court and Kane and Lindh secured the team triumph with an 8-0 shutout in the final match of the afternoon.

Two days later, they fell by the reversed score to the same foe, but they were shorthanded and had to forfeit two matches.

Tran once again won, defeating Jackson, 8-6, and King was narrowly edged by the same score on the second court. Molly Bacon fell, 8-1, but Lindh and Kane each won, 8-6 and 8-2, respectively.

Then, in doubles, Lindh and Kane warned an 8-3 triumph on the second doubles court.

Alexandere said the duals with West were especially meaningful for his squad because they don’t often get to play inner-city matchups. This year, due to COVID-19 concerns, the team is playing more regional contests against area teams such as West, Goffstown, Central and Memorial.

“Usually, we’re playing Division matches in D-III, so we’re competing against a lot of teams up north, so it’s been really important for us to get a chance to play these games because a lot of the players know each other,” he said, “so I think it’s more meaningful to them to be able to compete with our local peer programs.”

Tory Lindh, as the team’s lone returning senior, captains the team this season along with King, who took up tennis this spring following a standout high school golf career. Both, said Alexandere have exhibited leadership on the court.

The Pioneers will look to improve upon their early-season 1-2 record in the coming weeks. They are next scheduled to face Bishop Brady in a home-and-home series this coming Monday, May 3 and Wednesday, May 5, and then have another city matchup against Manchester Central scheduled for Monday, May 12.

About this Author

Ryan O'Connor

As a longtime journalist in Southern New Hampshire, Ryan O'Connor has written for several local online and print publications covering everything from school board meetings and local high school sporting events to major crime stories and New Hampshire's first-in-the-nation presidential primary (yes, the last two are mutually exclusive). In addition to spending time with his beautiful wife and four amazing children, Ryan enjoys attending and serving at church, golfing as much as possible, home brewing, playing softball and snowboarding when time allows.