Bow's Swett wins state girls' individual tennis title; Horiuchi wins boys' crownBy ALLEN LESSELS
New Hampshire Union Leader
June 04. 2013 11:47PM
MANCHESTER — Sunday Swett got hers.
It came in an unorthodox fashion, but Swett, a Bow High School senior, won her first state individual tennis championship on Tuesday on the courts at the Derryfield School.
Swett was down love-40 in the 10th game of her match against Bishop Guertin of Nashua senior Brianna Leonard and roared back to win the game and the first set, 6-4. And that's how the match ended.
Leonard left the court and never returned and Swett won the match, 6-4, retired, and the championship she had been chasing for four years.
Leonard and her family were unhappy with what they felt was a hostile environment from the crowd and tournament officials and she withdrew.
Swett was sitting alone in a chair next to the net when she got the word and let out a cheer.
The odd finish did nothing to tarnish the result for her, Swett said.
"Absolutely not," she said. "It's still the same medal. It was her choice. I'm not going to let it dampen my happiness."
Swett lost in the tournament semifinals as a freshman but had not made it that far again until this year.
"She's amazing," said Bow coach Jonsey Rainville. "Her goal from Day 1 was to win it, the goal of the whole team was for her to win it. I'm so proud of her. She deserves it. She's a fabulous tennis player and an even better kid."
She beat Cassie Burbine, a junior from Londonderry, in her semifinal match, 6-1, 6-4, on Tuesday.
Leonard beat Jennifer Dai, her senior teammate from Bishop Guertin, in the other semifinal, also 6-1, 6-4, to set up the championship.
Swett was down a a service break at 3-1 and ran off three straight games to go up 4-1. Leonard broke her serve again to tie it 4-4. Swett broke back and then pulled out the final game for 6-4.
The players took their customary break after the set ended. Leonard left the court and never returned.
Her parents said later that they felt the cheering against their daughter was over the top, both this year and last, and felt that part of the reason was perhaps because they live in Massachusetts.
She had also been docked a point before the match began because they were late in getting to the court. In addition, her father, Tim, had been told to leave the premises after discussing the sanction with officials.
The parents were also unhappy with how their daughter was treated after she slipped and fell in the sixth game of the title match.
She received medical treatment on the court and the math continued.
"It's just unfortunate the way it ended," said Rainville. "They're both extremely talented tennis players. I wish it could have gone the extra set. I think the result would have been the same. Sunday was the better player out there today."
Horiuchi top boy
Hanover freshman Kotaro Horiuchi outlasted big-hitting Bedford senior McKinley Grimes to win the boys' championship 4-6, 7-6 (8-6), 6-1 in a match that started at Derryfield and wrapped up next door under the lights on the Southern New Hampshire University courts.
"That was the best high school singles match I've seen," said Hanover coach Mark Lewis. "McKinley was hitting huge and Kotaro made him hit it back, hit it again, hit it again."
Grimes was down 5-0 in the second set and rallied to get it to a tiebreaker. He received medical attention for cramps early in the tiebreaker and then led the 'breaker 6-4 with a couple of match points.
"Unfortunately, I couldn't put away the one last shot," he said.
Grimes had a long day. He also went the three-set distance in his semifinal against Londonderry senior Harrison Max, winning, 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.
Horiuchi won his semifinal, 6-2, 6-1, over Greg Cistulli of Concord.
"He's a very intelligent player," said Bedford coach Shawna Morley of Horiuchi. "He neutralized McKinley's big shots. That was very high quality tennis. It was one of those epic classics."