Honesdale is off to a scintillating start this fall in the Lackawanna League girls tennis wars. Under the direction of Coach Bill Gibney, the Lady Hornets have reeled off three straight victories and are currently tied for first place.
Bill Gibney is one of the most experienced varsity tennis coaches in the entire Lackawanna League.
Honesdale’s veteran skipper has been involved with both boys and girls teams in his high school career.
Coach Gibney knows a good team when he sees one and the nucleus of this year’s Lady Hornet squad has the makings of a very competitive squad.
“I don’t want to jinx us right down into last place by saying anything dumb, but I’m very excited about this team,” he said. “We’re still a little bit young yet, but this group of girls definitely has some potential.”
To date, Honesdale hasn’t done anything to contradict that belief. In fact, as of Wednesday, the Red &?Black were undefeated in regular season action.
The Lady Hornets began their campaign with a razor-thin 3-2 decision over North?Pocono. They followed that up with back-to-back shutouts of Scranton and West Scranton.
From this point onward, though, the schedule will get a bit more dicey.
“We have some really big matches coming up, so we’ll see how the girls respond,”?said Coach Gibney. “This is a tough division and we’ll just do the best we can.”
Next up for Honesdale is a pair of matches against the Lackawanna League elite. The Lady Hornets travel to Clarks Summit today for a battle with Abington, then return home Tuesday afternoon to take on archrival Wallenpaupack Area.
Both matches are slated for a 4:00 p.m. start.
This year’s edition of the Lady Hornet tennis team is led by a quartet of battle-tested captains.
Seniors Maggie Walsh, Maddie Putzi and Jalenna Gibbs will team up with junior Abriana Nolan to provide Honesdale with leadership on and off the tennis court.
“They are a terrific bunch of girls,”?Coach Gibney said with a smile. “So far, they’ve done everything you could want from your captains.”
Any conversation about this year’s team must begin with Nolan, the team’s top singles player.
Abriana is currently undefeated in Lackawanna League play. Her latest win came Tuesday afternoon, a straight set victory over West Scranton’s Galen Haggerty (7-5, 7-5).
“Abriana has really devoted a lot of time to the team,”?said Coach Gibney. “She’s a very dedicated player.”
Maggie Walsh has opened her senior season on a solid note. Honesdale’s #2 singles player cruised to a straight set win on Tuesday, dealing West Scranton’s Leyna Fabri a 6-0, 6-1 loss.
Alexandria Mohn closed out a Lady Hornet sweep at singles thanks to a 6-4, 6-1 victory over Arianna Goldstein.
Honesdale’s remaining two captains will also see a action this fall in the starting line-up. Putzi is slated to alternate with Mohn at #3 singles and Gibbs should be a steady presence in doubels.
“I’m counting on all of those girls, not just to play, but to go out there and get us points,”?said Coach Gibney. “They’re a huge part of this team.”
Over & Out
Coach Gibney thinks that Abington, Paupack and Prep will be the “teams to beat”?this fall.
In Tuesday’s encounter, Honesdale closed out its sweep with convincing wins on the doubles court.
Rachel Fritz and Mackenzie Dirlam rolled to a straight set triumph over West’s duo of Emily & Liz Graziano (6-2, 6-0).
At #2 doubles, Kelly Small and Sarah Walsh defeated Maura Sare and Sara Skoritowski, 6-2, 6-0.