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Doug Notaris makes Wantagh proud
No matter how he played, Doug Notaris would come out of the first day of the Boys Tennis State Championships as a pioneer and a champion.
The Wantagh senior became the first tennis player from his school to ever compete at the state championships when he stepped onto the court for an out-bracket match at the USTA National Tennis Center.
Win or lose, he had accomplished plenty, but after Thursday’s results the Warriors’ faithful will be glowing with pride.
Fighting through extreme heat that at one point forced officials to briefly suspend play throughout the tournament, Notaris breezed through the out-bracket match and then a first round match in the main draw, losing just one game in the two matches to advance to the second round.
“I’m hot. I’m playing well,” Notaris said. “I couldn’t have asked for a better day… Tomorrow’s going to be great. Hopefully we can get some guys from my school down here, my teammates, get some cheering going and I’m really looking forward to it.”
While his friends may be coming out on Friday, his coach Daniel Burgess Jr., and Wantagh’s athletic director, Jennifer Keane were in attendance, Thursday, to show their support.
“It’s great to have him as a part of our program,” Keane said. “To be able to say that you have a state championship athlete, it’s not just Long Island, it’s the whole state. It’s just unbelievable. The whole school is excited.”
Notaris, who will play for Binghmaton next fall, said he felt their presence.
“It’s really mind-blowing, I’m getting so much support back at school, it’s great,” he said. “I feel like a hero at school. The athletic director was here today… and they’re all more excited than I am, it’s really great.”
As for his play on the court, Notaris had a near perfect day, especially considering he had to play in the only out-bracket match of the singles draw and then was the only singles player to play twice on the first day of the tournament.
He took care of Ethan Wilcox from Skaneatles 6-0, 6-0, and then beat Michael Perry from Seton Catholic, 6-1, 6-0.
“It was quick, I played well, and I like the heat,” Notaris said. “My forehand and my serve were on so when I have that going things will go well.”
Second round play kicks off Friday at 8 a.m.