The uncertain future

SHS boys tennis team to adjust after losing nine seniors

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Contributed by Joni Streit

The seniors of the boys tennis team line up under their banners on Sept. 17, which was the team's senior night.

Walking through the west lot of SHS, one can notice the nine, large senior banners hanging for the boys tennis team along the fence of the tennis court. With all of these experienced players, the team was able to finish with a regular season record of 10-5. However, now that the seniors are moving on, the future for the team is uncertain.

In the next few years, underclassmen will have shoes to fill considering the departure of many senior teammates. While some restructuring may need to take place, the team is looking to the future for more victories.

But, despite the fact that the players of the class of ‘19 will not being able to play next season, some of their legacy will live on in the players who will continue on the team. Junior Johnny Leon looks up to the current seniors for inspiration and leadership.

“(The seniors) have been really good friends since freshman year and they are really good players,” Leon said. “When I (didn’t) know how to hit my tennis ball, they (taught) me how to and they are really nice people.”

While players are looking forward for years to come, they do recognize the gap they will need to fill. Six out of the seven varsity slots on the team were taken by seniors this year. Now, underclassmen will have to rise to the occasion if they want effective results without the graduating class.

Junior Brendan Tyner will be the only returning varsity player on the team. Many things will be different for him this year because the players he was used to working with will now be gone.

“(The seniors) are our team,” Tyner said. “Next year without them will be really, really rough for our season and for us in general off the court.”

Senior varsity player Colston Streit has faith in the fate of team without him and others in his class. He sees promising qualities in the underclassmen that he believes will make for a successful team in the future.

Streit believes that the underclassmen are motivated to get better and improve upon their skills from the past. When he had the chance to hit with some of the junior varsity players, he saw they were inspired and looked up to the skill level of older players.

Some of the less experienced players look to gain leadership roles in the following years as varsity positions become available. Leon wants to take after the current seniors.

“The goal that I have is to try harder and try to be as good as (the seniors),” Leon said.

There is no doubt that the nine seniors on the team have made an impact on the program. Many successes made this year can be attributed. But next year when they are gone, it is apparent that others will have to step up in their place.

“They are close to me and everyone else on the team because they are our team” Tyner said.