Fox Chapel’s Shymansky places 3rd at PIAA singles

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Friday, June 1, 2018 | 11:00 PM


The PIAA singles and doubles championships were held May 25 and 26 at the Hershey Racquet Club.

In singles competition, Fox Chapel's Robby Shymansky made it to the semifinals before falling to Holden Koons of Dallastown High School. It was a tight match all the way through, with Koons prevailing, 6-7 (7-2), 6-4, 6-4.

“It was a tough loss for Robby,” FC coach Alex Slezak said. “He aspired to be the state champion, and he beat the eventual champion (Great Valley's Sameer Gangoli) just last week in the team competition. Holden is an aggressive, net-rushing, left-handed player. This is in direct opposition to Robby's style of play, which is a defensive baseline player. The setup indoors on faster courts favored Holden.

“The match itself was amazing to watch. The drama that unfolded with the deuce games was riveting. Robby had his chances to close out the match, but to Holden's credit he exhibited clutch play and ultimately it was a few key points at a few key times that gave him the victory, and he earned it. Robby certainly made him work for it.”

Shymansky came back to win his consolation match 7-5, 6-7 (7-5), 6-2 and finish in third place.

“To Robby's credit, and to show the kind of competitor he is even after the hard loss, he was able to get right back on the horse, do the next right thing and win a tough third-place match.

“He learned a great deal from he loss, and I am confident he will turn it into a long-term win for the development of his game and will be back next year.”

In the doubles tournament, Shady Side Academy's Naman Dua and Colin Gramley beat Nikhil Gangoli and Sam Kesti of Great Valley, 6-4, 2-6, 6-4, to advance to the championship match. They fell in straight sets 6-4, 6-1 to finish second.

Marty Stewart is a freelance writer.

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