The road to success in the Monsignor Martin Athletic Association's boys tennis tournament goes through Ross DeRose of Nichols. No one has been able to get past him for three years.
DeRose made it three straight titles on Sunday, with a straight-sets win over Alex Dashkoff of Canisius in the final. He's been a dominating force during his time with the Vikings, and he still has a year of competition left.
DeRose's season is over, but there's still time to recognize him as the Prep Talk Male Athlete of the Week.
Coach Tyler Bosch on Ross: "Besides his outstanding USTA record, Ross has competed successfully at the highest levels of scholastic tennis in the Rochester, Western New York and Western Pennsylvania area. Ross has always been a skilled player, and he continues to sharpen all the facets of his game. This season, his leadership galvanized our team and helped younger, less-experienced players grow on and off the court. Having a player like Ross that the underclassmen can look up to is a huge asset for any team, and I am thankful he will be able to play that role again next year as a senior."
How has your season gone so far? (Team record, statistics, etc.): In league matches I went 8-0.
Highlight of athletic career so far: Winning three consecutive Monsignor Martin titles.
Favorite thing about my sport: I’ve met a lot of great people along the way and I always have fun with it.
Toughest opponent and why: Canisius first singles Alex Dashkoff, because I always know I have to play my best against him.
WNY athlete I looked up to and why: My brother Anthony. He was playing in the same league a couple of years ago, so it is nice to have someone who understands the game and to push me in practice.
Pro/college athlete I admire now and why: My oldest brother and sister, Eric and Elise – I grew up watching my sister’s college tennis matches at Colgate University, and ever since then I wanted to have that same experience for myself. Same goes with Eric, even though he played soccer and squash in college.
Favorite school subject: English
What’s ahead (athletics and/or academics): I am looking forward to playing tennis in college.
Coaches can nominate athletes of the week by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org by Saturday night.