All told, you could say it was a pretty good spring for Andover’s David Grossman.
Sure, a nagging back injury forced him to miss some action, and that was a tad frustrating. But, in the time that he was there, Grossman — our 2019 Eagle-Tribune boys tennis MVP — delivered all of the goods and more.
The junior tri-captain didn’t drop a single set at No. 1 singles in MVC play, helping the Warriors (14-3) claim yet another league title. For his efforts, he was named the MVC Large Player of the Year. But success didn’t stop in the regular season.
Grossman won three matches to advance to the quarterfinals of the North Open, where he was eventually defeated by eventual state semifinalist Declan O’Flynn of Ipswich.
“David’s an outstanding player, student and person,” said Andover coach Mike Wartman. “He has a strong all around game, excellent court awareness, outstanding sportsmanship and is highly coachable.”
Grossman has been a strong player the past three years, and his rise should come as no surprise for the year-round tennis player.
“I really like the competitiveness of the sport,” said Grossman, who moved to Andover from California in the third grade. “I’ve been playing it for about eight years now.”
Besides tennis, the captain-elect for next season is also involved in math club, computer club and Habitat for Humanity at the school.
Andover, Soph., Singles
Two-time Eagle-Tribune All-Star. Two-time All-MVC. Went 8-0 in the league at No. 1 and No. 2 singles, and 8-3 overall. Beat both No. 1 players from Central Catholic and North Andover. Helped Warriors (14-2) claim another MVC Large title. “Reilly has excellent technique,” said coach Mike Wartman. “He is comfortable playing from the baseline or at net.” Captain-elect for next year.
Sam Feng-Bryan Hun Htun
Andover, Soph./Soph., Doubles
All-MVC duo didn’t drop a set in the MVC. Went 5-0 in conference when paired together, 8-1 overall. Advanced to North Open quarterfinals. “Their strengths are their solid strokes, serves and volleys and their communication and support of each other,” said coach Mike Wartman. Hun Htun transferred in from Governor’s Academy. Duo played together in USTA events during offseason to form connection. Feng runs track and also played football.
Central Catholic, Frosh., Singles
All-MVC. Newcomer from Methuen was electric. Posted a spotless 16-0 record at No. 2 singles between regular season and one playoff match. Scored four combined wins over perennial powers Andover and North Andover. Won first-round matchup in North Open. “He’s a very mature young man and an extremely hard worker,” said coach Turi Lonero. Plays at Cedardale and in USTA tournaments.
Methuen, Soph., Singles
MVC Small MVP. Advanced to third round of North Open (Round of 16). Posted 11-2 record from No. 1 singles spot in challenging MVC. “He really stepped up for us and had a great year,” said coach Joe Perrone. Beat North Andover’s No. 1, 6-3, 6-3. Led Rangers (12-3) to Division 1 North quarterfinals. Originally from Algeria. Also runs track and plays soccer.
Phillips, Soph., Singles
Two-time Eagle-Tribune All-Star (2018 MVP). From Andover. Returned from early-season injury to lift Phillips to Class A semis. Against defending NE Class B champ Brunswick, defeated Evan Lee — the No. 2 ranked freshman in NE — 6-3, 6-1 to fuel the “Biggest dual match win (we’ve) had in the last twenty years,” said coach Greg Wilkin. Also talented doubles player. No. 8-ranked sophomore in the state. Went 12-0 at No. 3 singles as a freshman.
Pinkerton, Sr., Singles
Four-year starter at No. 1 singles. Three-time Eagle-Tribune All-Star. Advance to state semifinal in singles tournament. Lost to eventual state champ Sam Goddard of Souhegan. Teamed with John Marineau to win state doubles tournament. Went 15-1 in singles to help Astros advance to state semis as a team. Went a combined 47-5 in singles over the past three years. From northeastern Italian city of Udine.
Andover — Justin Gu, Jr.; Avi Jonarthanen, Soph.
Central Catholic — Adrian Suciu, Sr.; Bailey Coco, Sr.; Ben Beaudoin, Frosh.
Greater Lawrence (Co-ed) — Alisson Calderon, Jr.; Alyssa Wilkins, Frosh.
Haverhill — Jared Libby, Sr.; Nick Bell, Sr.
Lawrence — Isaiah Caban, Sr., Jean Espinal, Sr.; John Mendez, Jr.;
Methuen — Onyera Chibuogwu, Soph.
North Andover — Matthew Feng, Sr.; Luke Depolito, Sr.; Matt Whidden, Jr.
Pelham — Nick Day, Sr.; Chris Druding, Soph.
Pentucket — Cory Foster, Jr.
Pinkerton — John Marineau, Sr.; Henry Andrews, Sr.; Jeff Marquis, Sr.
Salem — David Little; Ryan Pappalardo, Soph.
Windham — Henry Monterio, Sr.; Parker Andreoli, Jr.
BOYS TENNIS MVPs
2019: David Grossman, Andover; 2018: Aidan Burt, Phillips/Andover; 2016-17: Connor Aulson, Pentucket; 2015: Andrew Imrie, Andover; 2014: Ryan Broderick, Londonderry; 2012-13: Harrison Max, Londonderry; 2011/2009: Alex Burbine, Londonderry; 2010: Philipp Becker, Salem;
Alex Skinner, Brooks/Haverhill; 2006-07: Jeff Beaton, Pentucket; 2005: Michael Li, Phillips/Andover; 2002-04: Jason Sechrist, Central; 2001: Ty Esler, No. Andover; 1999-00: Justin Slattery, Central;
1997-98: Dave Nelson, No. Andover; 1996: Mike Stein, Andover; 1995: David Morse, Timberlane; 1994: Dan Queen, Andover; 1993: Eric Block, Andover; 1992: Paul Bernardin, Andover; 1991: Chris Chiang, Andover; 1990: Ian Hastings, Londonderry