Area tennis programs warming up

Area tennis programs warming up


Area tennis programs warming up



Coach: Lisa Wolfe, eighth year.

Last year: 6-11 (2-5 TRAC/6th).

Returnees: Seniors Jonathan Alexander, Dylan Henry and Carl Spears; juniors Robert Joerg Nate Rellinger, Connor Martin, Joe Meyer and Dylan Willey; sophomores Marshall Kuieck, Henry Nguyen and Hunter Smith.

Newcomers: Senior Andrea Lee; junior Rayjean Viruet and freshmen Brianna Goodwin, Kaitlyn McGilton, Brandon Richter and Joell Starks Fant.

Graduates: Gaetan Brugger, Domenic Meins and Taran Rodriguez.

Outlook: Former Oak Harbor tennis coach Rick LaFountain, a teacher at Ross, has joined Wolfe’s program as an assistant coach this spring. Rodriguez and Joerg were honorable mention all-Three Rivers Athletic Conference players for the Little Giants a year ago. Brugger placed fourth in the TRAC at No. 3 singles, Rodriguez was fifth at second singles and Joerg was sixth at No. 1 singles. Alexander and Meins took fifth at first doubles, while Rellinger and Martin battled to a fifth-place finish at second doubles. Alexander finished 9-14 a year ago, and will be in the mix this spring for a top singles spot, or top doubles spot. Joerg went 11-18 and is going to start the year as Ross’ No. 1 singles player. Rellinger returns after going 21-9 as a sophomore, while Martin was 18-9. Six other non-lettermen return to Wolfe’s roster, which will feature six newcomers.

“I probably have the greatest group of tennis players, attitude-wise, than anyone else around,” Wolfe said. “Those attitudes make practices very productive and they have been working very hard. We lost Taran, which is a huge loss, but we will have a lot of depth to fill the void. They have shoveled the tennis courts as a part of conditioning many times and we’ve been able to play outside several times so far and at the YMCA for a couple of weeks. They are not afraid to work. I have a team of 17 and at any given time, I would be comfortable with 10 being on a varsity court at some level.”


Coach: Joe Luthman, first year.

Last year: No victories, all matches required at least 3rd singles to be forfeited.

Returnees: Seniors Hunter Harrison, first singles; Aaron Burns, second singles; Jacob Hahn, first doubles; Nick McNair, first doubles; Ben Selvey, second doubles; and Jacob McQuistion, second doubles.

Newcomers: Seniors Mathias Michelsen and Sean Vasquez; junior Kyle Snodgrass; and freshman Patrick Cool.

Graduates: None.

Outlook: Numbers have been the biggest issue for the Crimson Streaks to overcome in recent years. No one would question the competitiveness shown by the players themselves. Both Harrison and Burns carried .500 records during last season, despite the team setbacks. McQuistion earned a match win at sectionals. All six players from last season were juniors.

“All of our players have continued playing despite fielding a team one short of a full squad of seven players,” Luthman said. “Our team is senior dominated. The program is in need of building, both in numbers of players and in skills acquisition. This year we intend to concentrate on better serving and doubles movement.”


Coach: Jim Picciuto, fifth year.

Last year: 15-3 (7-3 NOL).

Returnees: Seniors Drew Ring and Matt Poock.

Newcomers: Juniors Josh Becks, Nick Bock and Jake Chagolla; and sophomores Aaron Price and Tate Schoen.

Graduates: Collin Covella, Brent Runion, Blake Kryling, Tony Harper and Cody Henderson.

Outlook: Seniors dominated the Redmen lineup last year. That experience showed in the results. Blake Kryling and Drew Ring finished their season 15-3 in doubles play, while Harper was 15-2, Runion was 13-5 and Henderson finished 14-4.

“I never would’ve dreamed we would get that much production from all spots on varsity,” Picciuto said. Now, the fifth-year Bellevue coach hopes his young players can advance in tennis skills at a brisk pace.

“We’re going to be down a decent amount due to graduation, but we’ve got some younger guys who will step up I think,” Picciuto said. “They play tennis most of the year, which obviously helps. We had a pretty tough singles lineup last season, which is what we will need to work on replacing early this spring. I expect both of our doubles teams to be strong. The area will be pretty balanced competitively this year I think, with parity in both the NOL and SBC. We should be competitive in every match we play this season.”


Coach: Brian Miller, second year.

Last year: 8-8 (third in SBC)

Returnees: Seniors Alex Medley and Jonathan Lewis.

Newcomers: Senior Thomas Ariaans; juniors Aaron Klohn, David Murphy, Conner Rettenmund and Jacob Roach; and freshmen Caleb Prunty and Nathan Strudthoff.

Graduates: Jonathan Linnasted, Eddie Parish, Isaac Prunty, Pascal Steffens, Matt Toy and Daniel Wyss.

Outlook: Only two singles players return for the Fliers, who will have eight kids vying for varsity time.

“Jonathan Lewis was a rock for us at third singles last year, and Alex Medley did a good job for us at second singles against pretty good competition,” Miller said. “But we lost our first singles player and both doubles teams, so right now, that’s our main focus. We haven’t been outside much, however, when we have been, I’ve been impressed with the kids’ efforts.”

Lewis, Medley and Isaac Prunty all made it to the second round of the Division II sectional tournament last spring. Prunty also earned first-team all-SBC honors.

“Our JV kids had a great showing at last year’s JV SBC tournament where we had someone in each of the final matches,” Miller said. “We’re hoping for big things out of those players as the season progresses.”


Coach: Greg LaFountain, first year.

Last year: 4-13 (3-9 SBC).

Graduates: Doug Pennington, Eli Boldt and Ian Rhoades.

Returnees: Senior Ben David, juniors Nick Heintz and Ryan Johnson, and sophomore Dane Puckett.

Newcomers: Sophomores Travis Fischer, Luke Giesler, Logan Segaard and Zach Smith; freshmen Quinn Bodnar and Bo Hermes.

Outlook: The Rockets ended last year on a high note, upsetting Clyde by a 3-2 margin in their final dual match. However, new coach Greg LaFountain — the replacement for his father Rick LaFountain as head coach — will be starting fresh this spring.

“We’ll really be focusing on the fundamentals of our tennis game in the preseason,” LaFountain said. “We graduated a lot of seniors last year, so this will be a building year for Oak Harbor. We want to improve as much as possible and we hope to make this season as positive as it can possibly be.” David played JV as a junior, while Puckett lettered as a freshman. Johnson was unable to play as sophomore. “He’s gearing up to lead the team towards a great season,” said LaFountain of Johnson.


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