The improvement in Cannon Kingsley’s game from last year is immeasurable.
The Northport freshman, formidable as an eighth-grader, said he grew in confidence — and also about five inches in height — as he entered this season. He put it all to good use Monday during the final of the Suffolk individual tennis tournament at Floyd. Kingsley used his big serve and extra reach to knock off defending champ Chris Kuhnle of Shoreham-Wading River, 6-1, 6-1.
“I’ve been hitting my serve a lot better and the placement has been better,” Kingsley said. “Last year my backhand was better than my forehand but I’ve been working on that. Everything’s just better this year.”
Kingsley, who finished third last year, is Northport’s first boys county champion since John Sordi in 1986, according to coach Peter Quinn.
“All his training and the extra height — it all added up and we saw the result with him beating a great player today,” Quinn said. “His serve was better, he could reach more balls and his movement was better.”
Kuhnle displayed a hard serve, but Kingsley had an outstanding return game and terrific court coverage.
“I was just trying to be steady and patient and take the opportunities when they were there,” Kingsley said. “It’s one of the best matches I played in a long time.”
Rashidzada-Weisbrot wins doubles crown
In the doubles finals, Aziz Rashidzada and Jackson Weisbrot of Hills West beat Jonas Linnman-Feuerring and Gonzalo Trapote of Ross, 6-2, 6-1.
“Our chemistry and strategy has improved as we’ve gone on,” Weisbrot said. “Today was by far our best match we played all year and it was our toughest match.”
Weisbrot made the state tournament last year after finishing second in the county tournament with since graduated Evan Nierman.
“In our [semifinal] match we were definitely nervous and we let our opponents get into our heads a bit,” Rashidzada said of this year’s match. “In the final we didn’t let up. We always kept our feet moving and played point by point.”
All those who finished first or second and consolation winners move on to the state tournament beginning June 2 at the National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows.
In the singles consolation Abhinav Srivastava of Hills East defeated Jack Flores of Huntington, 6-0, 6-1. In the doubles consolation, Justin Dubler and Adam Wilck of Hills East won 6-3, 3-6, 6-4, over Tyree Grimsley and Lynus Fortaleza of North Babylon.