The Magic are good enough to be 4-0 in conference, and sitting with a winning record overall.
They believe it, and the scores reflect it.
Yet, the Magic are 2-2 in the conference and searching for the positive momentum that has been so elusive early this season.
“At times we’re playing well,” said Coach Jeff Bordwell. “But we really need to find a way to win the big points.”
That was especially evident this week, as Monticello dropped two straight conference matches while losing multiple swing matches in a third set.
Monday, Monticello lost 5-2 to Buffalo. But two singles and one doubles were both decided by a 6-4 final set, meaning if the Magic could have swung each of those matches, they would have instead walked out with a 4-3 win.
Tuesday was even more heartbreaking. The Magic got wins at their top three singles (Alex Revenig, Brooke Volpone and Grace Sawatzke) but fell 4-3 to Cambridge, with three matches going against the Magic in the final set.
“We’re working very hard,” said Bordwell. “But sometimes we don’t make the adjustments we need to make.”
Sawatzke is one player who has forced more adjustments than she’s had to make. With five more wins in the past week, Sawatzke ran her record to 11-0 at three singles.
“Grace is a real competitor,” said Bordwell. “She’s doing a really nice job.”
Being that it’s a young team, with two juniors, a freshman and an eighth grader playing singles, Bordwell expects continued improvement. If the Magic do that, they aren’t out of the conference race yet. This year features a round-robin schedule, meaning after Monticello takes on STMA Thursday, they will then go back and play each conference team once more. A strong second time through will make a lot of things possible.
“Two or three losses might win this thing,” said Bordwell. “It seems like there is a lot of parity in this conference. I think it’s going to be a dogfight.”