Titans Lose First Game in Four Years

Though the Stuyvesant Boys’ Table Tennis team, the Titans, was dealt their first loss in 5 years, ending their 60+ game win streak, they still hope to win their fifth consecutive title in Coach Feigenbaum’s last year.

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After some extremely competitive back-and-forth rallies, first singles and senior Alvin Chen was winning 2-1. It was match point, during which Chen could win the whole match and give his team the much sought-after win. While the ball was in midair, he took a step back and wound up his arm and swung his hardest, hitting the ball with extreme speed. However, his opponent from Brooklyn Technical High School, Gabriel Riskevich hit the ball twice as fast. Riskevich came back to win the game and the next one, winning the entire match, 3 games to Chen’s 2.

The Stuyvesant Titans, the boys’ table tennis team, has lost one game in the last five years to Brooklyn Technical Engineers, their all-time rivals. Before their last game on January 9, they had an ongoing win streak that spanned over 60 games, which is the majority of coach Bernard Feigenbaum’s entire career with the team.

At the end of their regular season, the Titans placed first in the Central Division, consisting of teams in Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn, with a record of 11-1. They shut out every team other than the Engineers (5-0) effortlessly.

The team has won all its scheduled matches this season. Senior and captain Isaac Rose Berman and his doubles partner, senior Nicholas Pustilnik, have won all of their matches this season, along with second singles junior Mark Amstislavskiy. Because Stuyvesant and Brooklyn Technical High School are so evenly matched, it just takes a few points to change the direction of the score. “We need either first singles or second doubles to win [against Brooklyn Tech]. Alvin came close [to Riskevich] in first singles, [and] it gave me confidence [that] Alvin could win [his game] in cities,” coach Feigenbaum said.

The Titans will likely face Brooklyn Tech again in the final round of the playoffs, as they are the two best teams in the PSAL. The Titans have overcome a lot to reach where they are today: they started a new season without the core three, Alston Wang (‘17), William Yao (‘17) and Eric Amstislavskiy (‘17), a group of seniors who led the team to four consecutive trophies. They’ve hit a rough bump with their most recent regular season game, but still have high hopes for a fifth consecutive championship. One regular season loss does not make or break a season.