With 10 players returning from a year ago and a former coach onboard to lend a hand, Laura Geniuch isn’t exactly starting from scratch.
It just feels that way, sort of.
“I’m know I’ll continue on with what Dick Barnes instilled in the program, a love and respect for the game, and an appreciation that it’s something they can do all their lives,” Geniuch said. “That’s sort of like the ‘Mission Statement’ for the program.”
Geniuch, a former collegiate tennis player and longtime USTA-certified instructor, can’t help but feel a few butterflies at the outset of her debut as head coach of the Friday Harbor girls tennis program. She’s had to play catchup with bureaucratic parts of the job as well, a challenge in its own right, after agreeing to take over the helm when another bowed out before the start of the season.
Still, she has a “to-do” list and plans for the tennis team, like ensuring that the etiquette of the sport is adhered to and instilling a little competitive fire into the program and among the players as well.
“I think there’s some room to be a little more serious-minded, to a degree,” she said.
With a well-seasoned roster, which features 10 returning players out of a total turnout of 14, she’ll have experience on her side.
Sophomore Yasmin Sarah returns to the team after inheriting the No. 1 singles position a year ago. Seniors Sophia Dillery and Summer Fox will likely compete in the No. 1 doubles slot, although they may have to fend off a challenge by sisters Ashton and Morgan Timmons to remain at the top of the team’s doubles players. Seniors Halle Carrier, Isabel Gabriel and Hailey Loucks bring experience and leadership to the court as well.
In high school tennis, the final result of each official match is determined by a best-of-five format, two singles matches and three doubles matches. Even though the girls tennis team will compete in the 2B category for post-season play, the Wolverines schedule of opponents will be more familiar than not, with larger schools, such as South Whidbey, Coupeville and Granite Falls waiting in the wings.
– Scott Rasmussen