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Penn-Trafford boys tennis shooting for fourth straight title

| Tuesday, March 18, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
Lillian DeDomenic | For the Penn-Trafford Star
Penn-Trafford junior Anthony Iovino competes in doubles during a match against Norwin on March 17, 2014.

The Penn-Trafford boys tennis team is coming off its third consecutive Section 1-AAA championship, and the Warriors are aiming for more of the same in 2014.

“I think that's everybody's goal, to try to do the best you can,” Penn-Trafford coach Linda Michaux said.

After posting 11-1 section records in 2011 and 2012, the Warriors swept through the section last season, winning all 14 matches and taking an undefeated overall record into the postseason. Penn-Trafford lost, 4-1, to Pine-Richland in the first round of the WPIAL Class AAA playoffs.

The top singles player from last season, Cullen Price, returns for his senior season. Price finished second in the section singles tournament last year, losing only to Chad Kissell of Latrobe. He has appeared at the WPIAL singles tournament every season since his freshman year.

“He's come through in the past, that's for sure,” Michaux said.

Joining Price at singles are juniors Tim Seaman and Anthony Iovino, both of whom saw playing time at doubles last season.

Senior Evan Astley and sophomores Noah Babik, Dave Reger and Justin Taylor will make up the Warriors' doubles teams in 2014.

Penn-Trafford opened up the regular season last week with a 3-2 loss against Hempfield. Price and Seaman each won their matches in straight sets, but Iovino and the doubles teams lost in close matches.

“It was a very close match,” Michaux said. “Unfortunately, we came out on the bottom on that one. But we won the section the last three years, so we're just going to have to work harder to try to win. It was only the first match.”

Penn-Trafford rebounded with a 4-1 win Monday over Norwin.

Michaux said she expected a lot of competition in the race for one of the three playoff spots out of Section 1. Franklin Regional and Latrobe joined the Warriors in the playoffs last season.

“It seems like our section has a lot of parity,” she said. “I'm sure the other teams are working hard, too.”

Doug Gulasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5830, via email at dgulasy@tribweb.com or via Twitter @dgulasy_Trib.

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