Half Hollow Hills aims to defend both badminton titles

Carly Cordano will try to help Half Hollow

Carly Cordano will try to help Half Hollow Hills defend its badminton title. Photo Credit: James Escher

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Last year, for the first time in school history, the Half Hollow Hills boys and girls badminton teams both walked away with a Suffolk County title.

Now, they are at it again.

"The kids are looking forward to the challenge and looking forward to defending their title," new head coach Bill Davey said.

The girls team has won four straight county championships and won 61 straight matches since 2010.

After going 20-0 in doubles in the regular season and winning the county championship, Carly Cordano will be returning as a singles player and possibly doubles as well.

"Whether she chooses to be singles or doubles, she's a front-runner for a championship either way," Davey said.

Cordano's squad has been undefeated since her freshman year, but having the boys and girls win the title in the same season was a proud rarity.

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"It an amazing feeling knowing that I contributed to that," Cordano said.

John Stanis and Jason Scheingold, the county runner-ups last year in boys doubles, will be returning for Half Hollow Hills this year as the dominant senior pair.

"We could've done a little bit better in the finals last year," Scheingold said. "But this year I'm going for a championship."

In boys singles, all eyes will be on senior Alfred Shim, one of best players in the county. Last year, he went 12-2 in the regular season.

"We have a very solid team," Shim said. "This season I just have to keep my body and mind in perfect condition."

Stanis, Sheingold and Shim led their team to its first county title since 2009. This year, the badminton stars will stay grounded on their road to another championship title.

"We have to make sure we're mentally and physically prepared to step onto the court and we have to make sure we don't take any of our opponents lightly," Davey said.

The boys face tough competition in Smithtown West, and some of the girls' toughest competition comes from Smithtown East. Both Smithtown schools were county finalists last year

"In this county, you don't really come across a bad team," Davey said. "We just have to make sure we don't make any slip-ups and remain at the top of our game."

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