A well-balanced lineup helped the J. Taylor Finley Middle School girls’ tennis team compile a 6-3 record this fall.
The 16-player squad was captained by Brooke Sullivan and Grace Gray and coached by Woodhull School physical education teacher Eric Triolo.
Finley was led by No. 1-4 singles players Tallulah Pitti, Sullivan, Jillian Loturco and Gray and No. 1 doubles combo Alyson Baker and Lily O’Heir.
Finley girls' tennis featured
many talented players. (Mike Connell photo.)
“Tallulah is one of the best singles players I have ever coached,” said Triolo about the seventh grader who went 8-1 in the top singles position. “She’s a tough athletic competitor and very skilled.”
Sullivan shined in the second singles spot, going 6-3. “A captain and leader of our team, Brooke is a very good player who will do great on the high school team next year,” said Triolo about the eighth grader.
A promising seventh grader, Loturco finished with a 6-3 record. “Jillian is a very skilled player who did a great job in No. 3 singles,” Triolo said. “I expect her to challenge for the No. 1 singles position next year.”
Gray was still another very good singles player for Finley, compiling a 4-2 mark in the No. 4 slot. “Gracie was one of our captains and she has a great attitude,” Triolo said. “She going to do great with the high school team next fall.”
Finley’s No. 1 doubles team consisting of seventh grader Baker and eighth grader O’Heir won seven of nine matches, providing key points in meets for the Falcons.
Finley boasted a deep roster, which also included seventh graders Sabeena Ali, Molly Fallon, Emily Geller, Kaylee Gomez Sanchez, Ainsley Proctor, Regan Sansiveiero and Carleigh Tracy and eighth graders Danielle Brite, Catherine McCooey and Kate Sheran.
Finley topped Northport (7-0 and 6-1), East Northport (6-1), Stimson (7-0), Hauppauge (7-0) and Elwood (7-0). The Falcons dropped meets to Commack (5-2) and Oldfield (6-1 and 6-1).
“This was one of my favorite teams ever,” Triolo said. “They were hardworking and had a lot of fun. We had a good mix of both seventh and eighth graders.”
Triolo was impressed with the overall improvement in the team’s play. “Each match we seemed to get better and better,” he said. “We had a great record, going 6-3.”
Next season looks promising, too. “We should have a solid team with some great players returning,” Triolo said.