The North Suncoast’s tennis stars all lost Monday on the first day of competition at the Class 3A state tournament in Altamonte Springs.
Mitchell freshman Dan Lukish lost to Edgewater’s Peter Tong in singles.
“He didn’t play his best game today,” Mustangs coach Peggy Hinmon said, “but I’m really proud of him as a freshman making it all the way to states.”
Lukish was the Class 3A, District 6 champion but stumbled in his first appearance at state. Tong reached the semifinals in No. 1 doubles at state last spring.
“I just think the experience of being there, getting this far, of seeing that level of competition is priceless for him,” Hinmon said. “I think we’ll see him there the next three years.”
Springstead’s doubles team suffered a similar fate. Sophomore Patrick Deslaurier and senior Carl Zee won the first game in their opening match but struggled after that, losing in the first round to Chamberlain, 6-1, 6-1.
“We needed to have our A game in order to compete with them,” Eagles coach Joe Nicolai said. “It wasn’t meant to be.”
Land O’Lakes junior Cori Arndt and sophomore Kavya Avancha couldn’t get past the first round and lost 6-1, 6-0 in the opener against Fort Myers.
“We went there for experience,” Gators coach Karen Turman said. “We got experience. Hopefully we will learn from that and be back next year.”