GOSHEN — Gurv Suri and Will Webber walked off the court stunned by a series of points.
The Cornwall team’s 4-1 lead in the second set had slipped away to Newburgh Free Academy’s Arnav Shah and Aarav Shah in the Orange County Interscholastic Athletic Association doubles final.
A third set would determine the champion. It was time for more focus and less celebrating between points.
Webber stepped up his game with consistent play at the net in the deciding set, where Cornwall pulled out a few games that went to deuce.
Meanwhile, Suri’s serve came alive. Cornwall scored all eight points on Suri’s final two services including the final game.
Suri and Webber would outlast the Shah brothers 6-4, 5-7, 6-1, extending Cornwall’s hold on the OCIAA titles.
“During the first two sets, we were screaming after every point,” said Suri, an eighth-grader. “In the third set, we calmed down and played it point by point.”
Webber, a senior, became the fifth Cornwall player to win multiple OCIAA doubles titles during the school’s run of seven championships in the past eight years. Webber’s experience mixed with Suri’s rising talent proved to be a tough combination to beat in the team’s first tournament together. Webber and Suri decided to enter as a wild-card team a few weeks ago.
“Gurv and I didn't play doubles all year,” Webber said. “We just kind of jumped in here and we did a lot better than I thought we would do. It was a lot less pressure this year and I think it showed in the play, too. I was a lot looser.”
Webber is hoping to turn the lessons learned last spring into another championship moment next week at the Section 9 tournament, starting Wednesday at Match Point Tennis in Goshen. He and playing partner Emil Vyskocil placed fourth in the 2018 section tournament, missing the third and final state-qualifying berth.
“I know how serious sections are,” Webber said. “Last year was an awakening. Every team was ready to play and every team was good. We had a couple close matches in the beginning that made us a little tired for the final two matches. I know how we need to play.”