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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Despite losses, NHS netters ready for 2007

Friday, August 3, 2007

Northview's Brock Lawson readies to hit a return to a teammate during the Knights' Thursday practice.
Tom West is in his third year as Northview High School boys' tennis coach.

Heading into the 2007 campaign, the long-time tennis coach -- who previously coached the NHS_girls' teannis team -- feels like the Knights are prepared to add to last year's success.

"Stuff is beginning to carry through," West said Thursday during the squad's practice.

The Knights graduated four varsity players and one junior varsity players from the 2006 team.

Gone are former No. 1 Alex Smith, No. 3 singles player Garrett Turpin, No. 1 doubles player Clint Grey, No. 2 doubles player Jeremy Johnson and fellow graduate Josh Miller.

"I hate losing that many, but I think we'll be better," West said. "We'll have to see."

However, West said NHS returns plenty of experience, led by senior Ryne Barr.

Also back this year are juniors Austin Akers, Matt Nodley, Brock Lawson and Clint Reynolds, and sophomores Adam Clark and Trent Sims.

New to the team this year are freshmen Sam Miller, Carson Kleiber, Joey Thomas, Caleb Mershon and Ben Merten.

"We don't have a whole lot, but we're pretty good," West said. "We're getting just about everybody beating everybody."

West said Akers, Barr and Nodley all played at the varsity level last year. He added Lawson picked up some varsity experience.

However, West said he expects the freshmen on the team this year to have an immediate impact.

"(Our numbers) kind of makes you feel like it's a little thin, but the five freshmen are pretty good," West said.

"They started taking lessons before we started."

West said even though the season is less than two weeks away, there is no set varsity lineup.

"They have to play each other for the lineup," West said.

West said the squad has been working on the fundamentals of the game.

"We're hitting fundamentals pretty hard," he said. "We're going deeper in fundamentals than we ever have before. We've got the ability up a bit."

West added the Knights are eyeing another Western Indiana Conference Championship, something they achieved last year for the first time in school history.

"This year, we're hoping to pull that off again," he said.

The Knights open the 2007 campaign on Aug. 15 at home against the Bloomfield Cardinals.

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