Fredericksburg High School's Media Publication

The Campus Comet

Fredericksburg High School's Media Publication

The Campus Comet

Fredericksburg High School's Media Publication

The Campus Comet

Clear River

    Order on the Court

    Order+on+the+Court

    Behind the rotting benches, in 100 plus temperatures, during long practices and dozens of matches, a team with an intense work ethic and motivated mindset lies within the eight tennis courts at Fredericksburg High School.

     Coach Randall King is currently coaching his 30th year at Fredericksburg and has led multiple tennis teams to state titles in the team (fall) and individual (spring) seasons. The current assistant coach, Ken Smith, watched his daughter win a state medal under the coaching of King and is now taking his swing at handling the team.

    “I really enjoy playing under Coach King,” junior player Sebastian Bach said. “He pushes me to become better.”

    Many people don’t realize that tennis has two seasons, the fall and spring. In the fall, the team plays a team tennis format, where the first school to win ten matches collectively, wins the match. At the start of the match, there are three girls doubles matches, three boys doubles matches, and one mixed (boy and girl) doubles match. After the matches have concluded and the schools have started their count to ten, six girls and six boys from each school go on for singles. There are a total of 19 matches, meaning only one school can win ten matches. 

    ”I enjoy the team season more than the spring,” Junior Sterling White says. “I like the competitiveness and cheering on the last match.”

     The spring semester is individual in the way that athletes are competing in a bracket, either in singles, doubles, or mixed. Players have the opportunity to advance as they are competing with every school in the tournament. Each athlete has their own preference of what season they like better. 

    “I prefer the spring season,” senior player Ella Stehling said. “Competing for myself and having an easier way to advance takes some of the pressure off and allows room for more fun.” 

     Because tennis is a year round sport, the practice never stops. There is a one to two month down period around December where the team is in between seasons, but the practices start again quickly. 

    The junior varsity team practices early in the morning into first period. The varsity team practices from the beginning of eighth period until 5:30. 

    Practices are hot. Temperatures have reached over 110 degrees, and the team has to be conditioned to the heat and preached into hydrating and drinking electrolytes. The words “liquid iv” is no new phrase to anyone on the team. 

    When matches become over two hours and players are entering a tiebreaker, it’s all about who can push through the extremities and stay energized. That is where the long hot practices boost the team to its best possible potential. 

    “Practice is the hardest part,”  sophomore teammate, Angela Lopez said. “It is long and hot, and we practice for most of the year, but all of it is worth it because we continue to grow and improve our skills.” 

    The hard work of the tennis team is not rewarded by large student sections, popularity, or a large booster club. The payoff of the hard work and dedication is received when a player wins the tenth match, moves on to state, or just continues to improve every day.

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