Trinh caps career in style, Blue Devils sweep season series with Raiders

Preston Trinh

Quincy High School's Preston Trinh teamed up with Trevor Nelson wto win their No. 2 doubles match against Quincy Notre Dame on Tuesday at the Greeman Tennis Center in Reservoir Park. | Shane Hulsey photo

QUINCY — Preston Trinh’s swan song was a beautiful tune.

Trinh, a senior, has played in the Quincy High School varsity boys tennis team’s lineup since he was a freshman. He played at No. 5 singles and No. 3 doubles last season, but he has been shuffled out of the Blue Devils’ lineup this season. 

Until Tuesday.

On senior night, Trinh partnered with fellow senior Trevor Nelson at No. 2 doubles to defeat Quincy Notre Dame’s Matthew Boudreau and Peter Damm 8-1, which highlighted an 8-1 dual victory for the Blue Devils at the Greeman Tennis Center in Reservoir Park. Trinh would not have asked for any other opponent in his final match as a Blue Devil.

“It’s been a rough season, but to finish out my high school career with a varsity win over QND, it’s a nice feeling,” Trinh said.

Trinh knew he could get his chance, so he stayed ready.

“I just always have to remember there’s a chance to move up, that I have the opportunity to do it,” Trinh said. “I just stay positive, because if I don’t stay positive, I’ll just keep sliding down.”

This wasn’t the only solid win for Trinh’s doubles partner on Tuesday. Nelson handled Daniel Dyer in No. 1 singles 6-1, 6-2. Nelson also won in straight sets when QND and QHS squared off on April 22, but against Alex Strong, who lost in No. 2 singles 6-4, 6-3 to Jason Derian on Tuesday. Nelson used a free and easy approach to yield another straight sets victory.

“I just wanted to play full out and have some fun,” Nelson said. “We had a really good match against QND last time. I just wanted the same result and to just have fun with my friends out here.”

Nelson has worked his way into the No. 1 spot that 2023 graduate Will Hanlin occupied last season. With the move to No. 1, Nelson has tempered his tendency to try to win a point with every swing, instead putting an emphasis on staying in points and moving the ball around the court. He still takes his chances, but he has become more selective.

“What works well for me is being a consistent player but then putting the ball away when I need to,” Nelson said. “Instead of just trying to get every single ball back in play, it’s dictating each of the points and then being aggressive when the time comes.”

Nelson watched with his teammates and dozens of others as the final match of the day — Derian and Anderson Knapp against Dyer and Strong in No. 1 doubles — carried on 15 minutes longer than the others. Derian and Knapp reached match point on serve, but Dyer and Strong won three straight games to seal the Raiders’ lone match victory of the day. QND coach Bob Catalpa said Dyer and Strong stayed patient against Derian’s accurate serve and Knapp’s long reach.

“Jason doesn’t have a powerful serve, but he never misses, so you have to hit full returns,” Catalpa said. “We hit four out of five returns and had plenty of extra shots. Anderson gets everything back and makes you hit seven extra balls when you think you’ve put it away. We just had to be patient but keep taking our swings.”

The Blue Devils (19-5) did not drop a set in singles. In addition to Nelson’s and Derian’s victories, Ethan Stark defeated Boudreau 6-1, 6-4 in No. 3 singles. Knapp lost just two games in beating David Erhardt at No. 4. Arrow Crist took care of Damm 6-3, 6-2 in No. 5 singles, and Crist’s doubles partner Kael Holzgrafe won the Kael-Cael battle, topping Cael Willer 6-4, 6-3. Crist and Holzgrafe won their No. 3 doubles match 8-2 over Erhardt and Willer.

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