High school tennis: Liberty tandem of Ronca and Farhad are The Morning Call All-Area Doubles Players of the Year

High school tennis: Liberty tandem of Ronca and Farhad are The Morning Call All-Area Doubles Players of the Year

After getting knocked off in the later rounds in the singles and team district tournaments this past spring, Anthony Ronca and Shayaan Farhad had one last crack at gold and a state berth.

The Liberty tandem put together a solid district doubles tournament, and even stormed back in the finals to complete their mission of qualifying for the PIAA tournament in Hershey.

The Hurricanes have grown accustomed to competing at the state level in recent years.

Ronca, a senior, and Farhad made sure to keep that tradition alive by knocking off Parkland’s Dan Zolotarev and Fyodor D’Souza in that district final.

For keeping Liberty on a winning path, Ronca and Farhad are The Morning Call’s Boys Tennis Doubles Players of the Year.

“Anthony and Shayaan played together a couple times in 2019 and they won their matches back then, so we had a good feeling they had some sort of developed chemistry going into districts,” Liberty coach Chris Conrad said.

“Anthony certainly wanted to go to Hershey as a senior, so he was more of the leader because he wanted it so badly. And Shayaan is probably the most improved out of any player in the past couple of years. He has worked incredibly hard on the court, especially when helping his doubles partner in districts this year.”

The pair ran into stiff competition at the state level, dropping their first-round match in straight sets to Anish Mhatre-Ben Cramer of Council Rock North.

Earlier in the postseason, Ronca and Farhad kept the Hurricanes in title contention by competing well at No. 1 and 2 singles, respectively, but ultimately claimed silver behind Parkland.

They also assisted Liberty to a tie with the Trojans for the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference regular-season and tournament crowns. Ronca finished runner-up at No. 1 singles and Farhad, a junior, impressively won gold at the No. 2 singles flight.

“A cool Liberty thing we’ve had going is we’ve been to the last six district doubles finals. We have this history of being able to compete at the highest level at districts,” Conrad said. “I think [Ronca and Farhad] had each other’s backs when they felt the tide was turning against them. In doubles, it’s a momentum game, point to point. I think they had a positive attitude and were resilient.”

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