The Wolverines will get in a full season of boys tennis this year for the first time in five years. Last year, the team was revived by a few determined students and parents, with help from new coach Kyle Loring, they were able to squeeze in a partial season.
“We’re still a relatively new and growing team,” Loring said. “Most players have really not been near a racket much but they’re learning a lot.”
Early this season the team played a few matches but was unable to come away with a win. On Sept. 18 they played Anacortes which has a large team, enabling the players to each play multiple matches, gaining valuable experience.
“They put in a good effort,” Loring said. “They fought the good fight.”
The team played Orcas Christian and won two matches on Sept. 26.
“We won our No. 1 and No. 2 doubles matches in close three-setters,” Loring said. “But lost our No. 1 and No. 2 singles match.”
At the start of the season, the team came up with individual goals which included learning to enjoy the game as well as improving their games in order to play with family and friends. In order to reach those goals, the players have been focusing a lot on the basics of tennis such as footwork and swing mechanics. They also spend time on strategy and moving around the court, according to Loring.
“For some of the newcomers we’re still making sure they know how to keep score,” said Loring “Which in tennis is not exactly intuitive.”
Each week, Loring has named one student Player of the Week. He chooses according to how hard each student is working that week.
“I choose the guy who puts in the most time and effort,” Loring said. “The one who gets there early to help dry the courts and is helping gather the last few balls when everyone else has left.”
With two graduating seniors this year Jonah Strasbourger who is the team captain and Sander VanHammersfield, Loring is hopeful the rest of the players will return next year.
“My primary goal is to return all of the students who played this year, (with the exception of the seniors and exchange students),” Loring said. “They continue to improve and I can’t wait to see what some of them accomplish with another year under their belt.”