David Jaslow had his doubts. How was Roslyn going to field a boys badminton team in the fall when it didn't have a coach, or enough players?
That played out in the senior's mind ever since he got the itch to play competitively during his sophomore year.
"Other schools had it, so I was definitely jealous that they had it and we didn't," said Jaslow, who is a member of the Bulldogs' tennis team in the spring. "My friends and I kept advocating for it. We needed help."
Help came in the form of social media.
"We started our own Facebook group, and before we knew it, we had enough people to make it," Jaslow said.
Not quite. Enter Denise Romanello.
"It's great that the idea to form a team came about," Romanello said. "First, there was concern that we wouldn't have the numbers. But the kids were extremely excited about making it happen."
Thanks to Jaslow, the student-athletes who volunteered to play, and Romanello, who is the first-year coach, the Bulldogs' boys badminton team has become a reality. Roslyn will play its first match in program history when it hosts Long Beach at 5 p.m. Friday.
"To be able to have a varsity badminton team, to be with my friends more now, it's really a dream come true and we're loving it," Jaslow said. "I didn't think it would happen."
Romanello is glad it did. "It's such a tennis community to begin with that it came as no surprise to me that the kids were genuinely excited about getting this started, as I was and am to this day, as well," Romanello said. "We have a lot more seasoned players that play outside of school, so the learning curve is going to be very, very quick for them."
It starts with Jaslow, who figures to be a top singles player. Jaslow is followed in the lineup by seniors Jordan Gabbay and Simon Adler. Jaslow's younger brother, sophomore Evan, and Gabbay's younger brother, sophomore Josh, are also part of the new team.
Romanello said all three upperclassmen have diversified skills with an ability to make others around them better.
"I think the program is going to explode," said Romanello, who will carry 16 players on the team to field a regular lineup of three singles players and four doubles teams. "These guys know how to read the court and how to place those short drop shots. They know where to hit it where they aren't. There's a lot of savvy play out there."