Varsity Tennis Team State Ranked

Photo by Reeci Morgan
The Tennis Team practices afterschool. They won the district champtionship and are now preparing for bi-district which will be October 26.

John Park, Editor

     The varsity tennis team won the district championship against Wills Point Monday October 5. State rankings came out around mid-September and the team was ranked 12 in the state and after winning district champs they are now ranked 9.

     “We have improved so much since the beginning of the season,” head tennis Coach Randal Namanny said. “With covid there were months that we were not able to practice and it really hurt us and how much the players would have grown, but they have shown so much resilience to that and have really improved greatly since the start of the season beginning in August.  [We] really have a special group of kids that come to work each day and push each other to get better.”

     The team is currently ten and four for the season, with the only losses being from Vernon, Longview, Tyler Legacy, and Rockwall.

     “[I am] very proud of [the team], and really look forward to a long postseason run,” Namanny said. “This team has so much potential and I really think that we can make a run at state this year.”

[I am] very proud of [the team], and really look forward to a long postseason run. This team has so much potential and I really think that we can make a run at state this year.”

— Head Tennis Coach Randal Namanny

     The varsity is currently made up of 10 girls and 8 boys, consisting of varying grade levels. The players according to their current spot on the ladder include girls Jacey King, Taegan Michel, Hope Nelms, Emily Huber, Bailee Lane, Abigail Van Andel,  Brooklyn Gilliland, Callie Little, Taylor Crawford, Bailey Thorne, and boys Jared Maeker, Andre Samaraweera, Emilio Rodriguez, Hunter Graham, Taegan Terry, Hayden Harry, Soren Peterson, and Silas Dutton.

     “I love playing in matches and getting to fight for my team just as I know they fight for me,” Samaraweera said. “My favorite part, continuously, is the camaraderie that comes with being a team. We spend hours with each other every day, and doing so we all know and support each other quite a lot.”

     The last time the tennis team was ranked was in 2011 where the varsity was ranked second in the state. This year will be the first time since 2011 that Tennis has been ranked in the top 10. 

     “I’m really looking forward to taking on different opponents and hopefully [coming] out on top,” Nelms said. “I also think we will go the farthest we ever have because of our 4A status and the overall talent of the team. I love being on the team because they make me feel like I can be myself. With all the stress from school, tennis is a great outlet to give out all my energy. Moreover, I love spending time with [the] team and making funny memories with them.”