Peglegs Looking to Capture Fourth Straight Title

The Stuyvesant boys’ table tennis team, the Titans, are looking to capture their fourth straight title amid the loss of key players.

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There has never been a dark spot in the history of Stuyvesant’s boys’ table tennis team, the Titans. Ever since table tennis became an official PSAL sport three years ago, in 2014, the boys’ table tennis team has dominated the city and captured all three championships.

During last year’s playoffs, first-seeded Stuyvesant faced its rival, Brooklyn Technical High School, and won the match 5-0. The team easily won each of its games 3-0 (in a best of five). Though the team has lost five seniors, including first and second singles Alston Wang and Eric Amstislavskiy, respectively, it still hopes to continue its golden streak. Current senior and co-captain Isaac Rose-Berman said, “We've never lost a game in [the last] four years and [we] want to keep that streak going, especially as this is [Dr. Feigenbaum’s] final year. We definitely want to make him proud and perform to the best of our ability.”

Many of last year’s players, along with a mixture of new players, have had to step into a larger role this year. Senior and co-captain Alvin Chen, who became first singles this year, said, “We are definitely going to have a much harder time without last year's seniors, but I believe if everyone does his part, we can win again.”

Currently, the team is in first place in the Central Division. In the past three games, the Titans have shut out Brooklyn Community Arts and Media (BCAM) High School, Millennium High School, and Jacqueline K. Onassis Inter Careers all by a score of 5-0, not losing a single game in the BCAM match. New starters this year include sophomore Jeremy Lee as first doubles and senior Mahidul Shahel with freshman Dilan Apterman as second doubles.

One notable thing is that while they are still winning, the Titans seem to be struggling more than they have in the past. In the previous game against Millennium High School, the third singles game played by Rose-Berman and the first doubles match, played by Lee and junior substitute Linpeng Chen, were won by 3-1, meaning they each dropped a game to their opponents. While they both handily won their matches, it could become a more pronounced problem against a tougher team.

That tougher team is also their main rival, Brooklyn Tech. “It’s an uphill battle for us. A few people have to improve to have a shot at [defeating] Brooklyn Tech,” coach Feigenbaum said. He made it clear that this season is going to be much tougher than those of previous years because of the loss of key players and the new freshmen that Brooklyn Tech has acquired. However, as of right now, the team appears to be as strong as ever.

Since this could be coach Feigenbaum’s last year, he has to prepare his players for a coaching change and find the new coach. He does not believe that the assistant coach will step into that role and has been “looking for people that…know the rules and the strategy and have the time to do the job.” While it is still early in the season, it is never too early to think about the future.

The Titans are gearing up for another championship run despite the loss of multiple seniors from last year. They have shown a few signs of weakness compared to last year, meaning everyone has to step and work a little harder. Many of the players have had a lot of experience with table tennis and been part of the championship teams led by Dr. Feigenbaum and will again aim for a fourth straight City Championship.