The writer was an intern in the sports department in 2009.
Repeat Section II Class AA champions. Consecutive undefeated seasons.
With a 5-4 win over Niskayuna last Monday, both are titles that can be bestowed on the Bethlehem boys tennis team.
I’m so happy for my seniors I don’t take any of them for granted, said Bethlehem coach Steve Smith.
One of those seniors, Peter Collins, gave the Eagles a boost with a two-set victory over Niskayuna’s Chris Frost at No. 1 singles. Collins won the first set 6-4 before turning into a combination of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in beating Frost 6-0.
`In the second set, I got the first [service] break, and I just went from there,` said Collins.
`He came out ready to punch [Frost] in the face with tennis. He didn’t give Chris a chance,` said Smith.
It was an unexpected result for Collins, who lost to Frost during the regular season.
`We were both very nervous [in the regular season match], and the level of play wasn’t as high,` said Colllins.
The Sectional title was decided at No. 2 doubles, though. Bethlehem juniors Alex Iselin and Ethan Vanraalte fought through a back-and-forth match with Niskayuna to pull out what proved to be the clinching victory.
The win over Niskayuna was Bethlehem’s 30th in a row since the start of the 2009 season. It was also the Eagles’ fourth Sectional title in the past five years.“