Going Out on Top


A year ago, in May 2017, after Wake Forest’s men’s tennis team lost too early in the NCAA tournament, I concocted a plan. The plan was to string for the team for a 10th and final year, win a National Championship on our home courts at the Wake Forest Tennis Complex, and go out on top.

I only told my wife, Sandy, and a couple of friends of my plan. When Wake Forest won the team title, the reality of my impending retirement set in.

My son, Paul, who has been deeply involved with the stringing business from the start, actually strung most of the Wake Forest rackets during the tournament (as he had during the season). But I wanted to make sure the last rackets I strung for the team were memorable.

Petros Chrysochos and Borna Gojo gave me the perfect memory when they made the Men’s Singles final. The last four rackets I strung as the head stringer for Wake Forest Men’s Tennis were two for finalist Gojo and two for NCAA Men’s Singles Champion Chrysochos.

NCAAs with Pete and Goj

Delivering Gojo and Chrysochos their rackets for the NCAA Singles final, my last four rackets as head stringer for Wake Forest Men’s Tennis.

I couldn’t have scripted my exit any better. 10 years and several thousand rackets leading up to the NCAA National Championship as a team, capped off with my very last racket: Petros Chrysochos’s racket #13, the racket he used to win the NCAA singles title.

Last Racket for Pete

Last racket on the machine: Petros Chrysochos’s championship-winning #13.

I’m happy to be able to leave the responsibility of head stringer to Paul. The team is in good hands.

WSJ Story Picture

Photo credit: Walt Unks/Winston-Salem Journal

And I will be around to customize and consult, and to cheer for whoever is playing Court 6 for the Deacs, as long as I have my day job.

#bigtime #GoDeacs

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