Tennis: Haddonfield takes its shot at T of C title

Haddonfield will try to cap a perfect season with an upset victory in the girls' tennis Tournament of Champions final Wednesday.

Haddonfield coach Jeff Holman said his team's match against Group 4 champion Westfield is "a David and Goliath scenario."

Haddonfield is David.

The Bulldogs are 31-0 and the state Group 2 champion. But Westfield is a powerhouse of a Group 4 program.

      Westfield is 23-0. The Union County program has long been regarded as one of the strongest in New Jersey.

       “We know they are good,” Haddonfield junior Taylor Noll said. “But we’re really excited about this opportunity. This is what we’ve been working toward.”

      Haddonfield advanced with a grueling, 3-2 victory over Group 3 champion Millburn in Monday’s semifinals. Westfield beat Non-Public A champion Red Bank Catholic, 4-1, in the semifinals.

      Haddonfield’s victory over Millburn featured straight-set victories by No. 3 singles Spencer Ng as well as the No. 2 doubles team of Noll and Rebecca Senopoulos.

      The other three matches went to three sets, and all of them featured a tie-breaker. The No. 1 doubles team of Martha Theodoris and Catherine Senopoulos scored the decisive point for the Bulldogs by rallying from a set down to score a 4-6, 7-6 (11-9), 6-1 victory.

      “The match with Millburn was one of the greatest team matches I’ve ever been involved in as a coach,” said Holman, who has been Haddonfield’s coach since 1976.

      Westfield will provide perhaps the biggest challenge of the season for Haddonfield.

      Westfield’s No. 1 singles player, Lexi Borr, was the No. 1 seed in the state singles tournament, although she lost to Gill St. Bernard’s Tina Jiang in the semifinals. Borr will face Haddonfield freshman Taylor Ng, who has a 39-3 record.

      Westfield’s No. 1 doubles team of Samantha Borr and Morgan Murphy was the No. 1 seed in the state doubles tournament, although they lost to eventual champion West Windsor South in the round of 16. Haddonfield’s No. 1 doubles team of Theodoris and Catherine Senopoulos also lost to West Windsor South in the doubles championship match.

      Theodoris and Catherine Senopoulos have a 42-1 record. At second doubles, Theodoris and Rebecca Senopoulos have a 35-2 record.

Haddonfield No. 2 singles Meghan Burns has a 30-4 record and No. 3 singles Spencer Ng has a 34-4 record.

-- Phil Anastasia