Parkland Press

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PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERBParkland’s Alex Son leaps to reach for a ball during an early-season match. Copyright - Don Herb 2017_ PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERBParkland’s Alex Son leaps to reach for a ball during an early-season match. Copyright - Don Herb 2017_

April snow wipes out tennis match

Thursday, April 19, 2018 by CHUCK HIXSON Special to the Press in Sports

Everyone – fans, players, coaches – stood around thinking ‘this can’t be right.’ It’s mid-April and two rival high school tennis teams, both among the better teams in District 11 and the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference, were just trying to play a simple tennis match.

But it was cold, bitterly cold. It was windy enough to misdirect not only volleys but serves. And oh yeah, it was snowing. Snowing!

Parkland coach Mike Hingston and Emmaus coach Dimitri Diamandopoulos conferred before sending their teams out to warm-up, if you can call it that, and decided against postponing the match, if at all possible.

The players took to the court, but conditions soon turned worse and both coaches agreed that if they saw any players sliding on the surface, they were done. As the snow began to come down harder, both coaches saw a player slide and nearly turn an ankle and that was the end of the match, at least for now.

“We weren’t going to get anybody hurt,” said Hingston. “As much as Dimitri and I both wanted to get this match in, you’re not going to have kids running around out there if it’s dangerous and unfortunately, it got to that point.”

The two teams will pick up again this afternoon in what has to be better conditions than what they had to work with on Tuesday. Emmaus (12-0 overall, 11-0 EPC) is a young team and in the early moments of some of the matches, that youth was showing against a more experienced Parkland team (7-2, 7-1).

Weather has not been a friend to the local tennis schedule this spring. The regular season was due to end on Friday but having matches against Liberty and Allen postponed earlier in the season, the Trojans are going to have to end the season on a wild, difficult note.

The match against Emmaus has yet to be rescheduled, but the Trojans still have a busy schedule this week with a match against Northampton (8-3, 6-3) on Friday. The showdown against Liberty (8-0, 8-0) comes on Saturday morning, followed by the match against Allen (2-5, 1-5) later that same day.

“It’s kind of a murderer’s row,” said Hingston. “It’s a tough way to have to play it, but that’s what’s happened because of the weather and just the way the schedule played out. You just have to do what you can and make it work.”