Rye Neck Boys’ Tennis

Panthers Sweep League for Third Straight Crown

By Mitch Silver

The last time the Rye Neck Panthers lost a league tennis title, Cuba was off limits to U.S. tourism, Donald Trump was host of “The Apprentice”, and the Chicago Cubs were still America’s lovable losers. The last time Rye Neck tennis star Eikoh Hayashi lost a league singles match was, well, never.

They did it again in 2017. The Panthers ran through their 12 league matches without a blemish, and Hayashi at 1st singles finished the season undefeated as well. In fact, this spring he became the first male tennis player at Rye Neck to win the Conference Championship in singles. Not surprisingly, the junior earned All-League and All-Conference recognition for the season. Then he made it to the Sectional Quarterfinals before losing in a hard-fought match.

Fellow junior Ryan Francavilla, who played 2nd singles, also earned All-League honors and played in the Conference Tournament, losing in the first round. Senior Hunter Greenhill, who played 3rd singles, finished the regular season 9-2 and earned All-League honors as well.

In his eighth year at the helm, Coach Shawn Lincoln was characteristically low-key. “We ended up having a pretty good season. We’ll graduate eight seniors from this year's team, but they’ve had quite a run.”

The Cubs can only wish for such a run.

 Coach Shawn Lincoln, second from right, joins his three-time league champs.

 Eikoh Hayashi on the way to another easy win