Cavalier boys tennis is back and even better

Hollis Brookline High School boys tennis enjoyed a monster campaign in 2018, rolling to a 12-2 mark and reaching the Division II state title match.

Ultimately, the Cavaliers fell to Souhegan, 7-2, in the title match, but No. 1 HB player Nic Vahe let it be known:

“I’m really proud of all of us. We’re a real young team and I think we have a bright future.”

The future is now for Hollis Brookline.

“The same young team from last year returns with more experience and growing depth,” said coach Jim McCann. “We’re looking to build on last year’s successful season.”

On the girls side, the Cavaliers return five starters from a 5-9 squad and look to build on that behind senior Samantha Randlett.

“Once again, our home court will be indoors at Longfellow Tennis Club in Nashua,” said coach Maria Salamone. “The key to our success is getting outdoor play time, so we can be competitive both indoors and outdoors.

“We are still a young team. All the players worked hard on the off season and are excited to be together again this season.”

Both the Cavaliers’ baseball and softball programs welcome new bosses to the dugout.

James Sartell takes over the baseball team, which went 6-10 a year ago.

So far, he likes what he sees.

“This is a gritty group of players who have played with each other for years and are committed to working together to win baseball games,” said Sartell. “They are led by some talented seniors who are hard workers, understand the importance of being a positive influence on and off the field, and who want to leave their mark on the program. The juniors have played with each other since they were 9 or 10 years old and have worked hard to become skilled players who do what they can to help their teams win. We are looking forward to the putting the best team we can on the field and to play to our potential.”

Frank Lukovits, a veteran of years in the dugout with ASA travel teams, assumes control of the HB girls softball program.

“I am very excited,” said Lukovits. “I expect a good level of improvement this year. We have a great group of girls who are anxious to show their new coach what they can do.”

The Hollis Brookline girls return five senior starters from a 3-13 team a year ago. Here’s a capsule look at the four squads:

Baseball

Coach: James Sartell, first year

2018 Record: 6-10

Returning Starters: Kyle Hsu, sr., C: Max Mello, sr., 2B/P; Joseph Messina, sr., SS/P; Grant Snyder, jr., P/OF

Returning Letter Winners: Henri Boudreau, jr., 1B/P; Nik Direnzo, jr., INF/P

Promising Newcomers: Ryan Coutu, jr., INF/OF/P; Brandon Hsu, soph., INF/P; Nathaniel Sartell, jr., INF/OF/P

Softball

Coach: Frank Lukovits, first year

2018 Record: 3-13

Returning Starters: Cassidy Pigott, sr., INF; Skylar Mack, sr., INF; Sofia Barassi, sr., OF; Kara Lukovits, sr., INF; Delayni Kovalchek, sr., INF

Returning Letter Winners: Kylie Krivis, jr., OF; Abi Blasi, jr., INF/OF; Marisa Brickner, soph., P; Jess Hubert, jr., OF

Promising Newcomers: Allison Johnson, Frosh., P

Girls Tennis

Coach: Marie Salamone, ninth year

2018 Record: 5-9

Returning Starters: Samantha Randlett, sr.; Delaney Wiemer, soph.; Lia Eisenberg, soph.; Aya Kingsley, soph.; Samantha Morse, soph.

Returning Letter Winners: Lindsey Wood, sr.; Cassie Farnworth; soph., Natasha Ferro, soph.

Promising Newcomers: Hanna Escandon, Frosh.

Boys Tennis

Coach: Jim McCann, seventh season

2018 Record: 12-2, Division II state runner-up

Returning Starters: Nic Vahe, jr.; Darius Paradie, jr.; David Cherkassky, sr.; Ben Zielinski, jr.; Alex Anghel, jr.; Max Burns, jr.

Returning Letter Winners: Rory Klauber, soph.; Thomas Ackerly, jr.; Will Pesiridis, soph.

Promising Newcomers: Cole Lorig, jr.; Hayden Smith, frosh.; Cooper Adair, frosh.; Sreekar Chilalsapati, jr.

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