Hurricanes edged by Hills West; East Hampton battling for second place

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With the Division IV (Leagues VII and VIII) boys tennis tournament approaching, two local teams were working on capping off undefeated league records this week while another was in a battle for second place.

Westhampton Beach needed only a win at Mattituck on Monday and a victory at home against Shoreham/Wading River on Tuesday to finish atop the League VII standings with an unbeaten record, while Southampton needed to get past Ross on Monday and Southold/Greenport on Wednesday, May 7, to go undefeated in League VIII.

East Hampton hosted Longwood on Monday in a game that decided second-place in League VII and closed out the regular season at home against Mattituck on Wednesday, May 7.

All three teams should have a strong presence at the Division IV tournament, which begins on Friday at Shoreham/Wading River High School, but the Hurricanes have been the most dominant of the trio and are expected to be strong once again.

East Hampton

The Bonackers suffered a 6-1 loss to Westhampton Beach at home on April 29, but the one matchup that East Hampton did win was an impressive one.

The first doubles team of Jonathan Jamet and Dylan Sanicola handed the Hurricanes’ Eric Antunovich and Greg Kandell their first league loss of the season, winning the first set 6-1, dropping the second set 6-2 and rallying for a 7-6 (7-2) win in the third set.

Jamet and Sanicola took a 5-1 lead in the tiebreaker and Antunovich and Kandell could not catch up.

“It was a great win for them,” East Hampton head coach Jim Nicoletti said of Jamet and Sanicola, who were playing as a team for only the fourth time this season. “They’ve been getting better and better and hopefully they’ll have a shot at going to counties.”

At first singles, Jimmy Strauss lost to Richard Sipala 6-0, 6-0; at second singles, Carlos Uchupailla lost to Tyler Schulz 6-0, 6-1; at third singles, Luke Sweetman lost 6-0, 6-1 to Christian Thienel; and at fourth singles, Luke Scarpulla lost to Brian Lehrer 6-0, 6-2.

At second doubles, Brian Fink and Zach Newberger suffered a 6-2, 6-1 loss to Kenny Ballato and Dylan Jurow while, at third doubles, J.J. Burke and David Rubenstein were downed 6-1, 6-3 by Steven Palmer and Alex Rutherfurd.

The Bonackers were the dominant team in a 7-0 win against Rocky Point on May 1 at home.

Newberger beat Sam Caffrey-Agoglia at first singles 6-1, 6-1, which was a vast improvement from what was a hard-fought three-set win for him in their first meeting.

At second singles, Strauss beat Jacob Rusek 6-1, 6-1; at third singles, Fink beat Chris Gerace 6-0, 6-0; and at fourth singles, Uchupailla beat George Balina 6-0, 6-3.

Jamet and Sanicola had another impressive win over a good doubles team, beating Kevin Baffen and Keith Vogle 6-1, 6-3.

At second doubles, Jonathan Sanabria and Burke beat Adam Pometti and James Bauker 6-1, 6-1; and at third doubles, Rubenstein and Scarpulla beat Brian Whaley and Brian Russell 7-5, 6-3.

The seeding meeting for the Division IV tournament will take place on Thursday, May 8.

Each team in the division will automatically have its top two singles players and top two doubles teams entered in the tournament, while the additional singles and doubles spots are chosen and seedings are awarded after the meeting.

Nicoletti said on Sunday that he is hoping to get an extra singles player and extra doubles team to qualify and is also hoping that Newberger and Strauss would be seeded in the top eight.

Newberger and Strauss are the top two singles players for East Hampton, while Jamet and Sanicola and Sanabria and Burke are the top two doubles teams.

Nicoletti said he was unsure what players from his team would battle for a potential third doubles spot, but he expects Fink to get an invite as an unseeded singles player.

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