Sequim High School’s boys tennis team is going to look a lot different in 2019 than it did a year ago after graduating all five players who went to the 2A state tournament in singles and doubles play.
Longtime head coach Mark Textor has built a reputation on building solid tennis teams, but losing the likes of Blake Wiker, Thomas Hughes, Damon Little, Raymond Lam and Liam Payne is going to be a firm test for this new-look Wolves tennis team, especially Wiker, Hughes, Little and Payne all were 2A state doubles tourney qualifiers.
“Losing (those five) and the other four seniors who graduated cuts a lot of experience out of this team,” Textor said.
“This might be the greenest team I’ve coached.”
Sequim will be relying on a younger group like Dustan Koch, Henry Hughes and Dallin Despain to step up and contribute at a high level, while a handful of seniors like Brenton Barnes, Ryan Tolberd and Sam Frymyer will be called on to provide leadership.
Hughes and Koch teamed to go 10-3 as doubles partners in 2018. Tolberd saw most of his action last season in doubles play with Nate Despain, as the two racked up a 9-5 mark and spot in the Olympic League tourney.
Frymyer saw action in eight singles matches and seven doubles matches in 2018.
“This is definitely a year to make improvements for our players, for them to get better and gain experience,” Textor said of what he called a “very young” team.
“That said, they’ve got a fantastic attitude with everything so far. They’re eager to learn and improve.”
While Textor said he’s getting an idea of what his core group of competitive varsity players will be this season, it seems likely that some of the early matches will be sent seeing just who belongs where on his rankings ladder of players.
SHS’ boys tennis team kicks off their season on Sept. 12 at Port Angeles, and goes to Klahowya on Sept. 13. The Wolves’ first home match is Sept. 16 versus Chimacum; matches start at 4 p.m.