DEMAREST, N.J. — It took 135 years, but the Academy of Holy Angels Demarest varsity team made its first win in Bergen County's Tennis Tournament.
Adrianne Alfonso was the second singles champion, and Ashley Hess was the first singles finalist who went three sets with the number one seed. The two accumulated the most points.
The team's biggest accomplishment was in the first doubles against Immaculate Heart Academy, noted coach Jessica Leto.
An alumna who once played on the team, Leto has been coaching at Holy Angels for the past seven years. In her freshman year, the team came as close as runners up in the county tournament.
“We knew going into the season that this was the biggest goal we could possibly attain,” Leto said.
The school was in the running with second place Ridgewood High School. It came down to the final match to determine the win.
"We were seated in the county as the number one seed. I think a lot of people had expectations of what this season would bring for us, and the county tournament was the focus just because it’s something that has never been done," Leto said. "The girls knew that if it was ever going to be done, now was the time."
"Winning the Bergen County Tennis Championship for the very first time in school history is an unbelievable accomplishment. We couldn't be more proud of our girls and their coach," Athletic Director Patti Gorsuch told Daily Voice in an email. "Their hard work and dedication over the summer certainly paid off."
Now that the team has won one of the big school competitions, they move on to face the private Pingry School in Basking Ridge on Oct. 8 — a team they have yet to beat. But if they do, the win will propel them into the state sectionals final. They won two years ago, but lost last year. Aside from other matches, the county tournament stands out.
“It’s probably the most prestigious tournament that we’ll play all year," Leto said. "It’s something that all the local schools are involved in.”