Local tennis teams excited to start seasons this week

Seymour, Brownstown Central and Trinity Lutheran all open their respective tennis seasons today.

The Owls host Waldron, the Braves welcome Madison and the Cougars go to New Washington.

All three coaches are excited about what their rosters have to offer this fall.

Seymour

Starting with the Owls, head coach Brandon Davis is heading into his second year at the helm. Seymour felt like it let the sectional championship slip away from them last year, so that has kept the Owls motivated in the offseason.

“We don’t like to lose, and that hurt,” Davis said. “We didn’t enjoy it, and we’re hoping we can enjoy a lot more wins this year. We’re looking to continue to grow and get better.”

Key returners for Seymour are Eli Meyer and Jack VonDielingen, who advanced to regional as a one doubles tandem last season. Hunter Heckman, who played one singles all of last season, also returns. Joe Schmidt, Reuben Kruse, Trevor Alberring and Parker Thompson are other varsity participants from last year who are back, as well.

The Owls also bring in freshman Shun Takeuchi, who will have a chance to contribute early on.

Davis feels like he knows what Seymour’s best lineup could be, but he wants to experiment throughout the season and try different players in different spots.

“Luckily we only lost one senior,” Davis said. “We’re ready, we’re fresh, we’re excited.”

Brownstown Central

The Braves also have a lot of returners this season as Donnie Thomas is heading into his second season as head coach.

Thomas believes his singles could be strong, as he plans to start Smith Hackman at one singles, Pierson Wheeler at two singles and Lane Steward at three singles.

“Lane would’ve played a lot more last year if I didn’t have a couple seniors I didn’t want to yank out,” Thomas said. “Smith has taken lessons over the past year. Smith is going to go one, Pierson is going to stay where he was last year, and he only lost three matches last year there (at two singles). I’ve got three sophomores there (at singles), so I feel like we’re pretty set.”

Thomas will also have his one doubles team of seniors Connor Gwin and Bryce Reaser. At two doubles, Thomas plans to start Evan Schneider and Elix Preston.

“They started playing a lot better together last year,” Thomas said of his one doubles squad.

The Braves want to be able to compete in the sectional this season. Thomas knows Seymour is most likely the team to beat, and he hopes Brownstown can be a contender.

“Seymour is probably going to be the team to beat again,” Thomas said. “They’ll do well this year. We’ll have a good team.”

Trinity Lutheran

Head coach Kable Walton is excited about his mix of players this season.

Walton expects a big year out of Nathan Voelker, who will either play at three singles or one doubles.

“I think Nathan is going to step up for us,” Walton said. “We’re going to be very solid in those singles positions, and with doubles, we just have to learn the play the game of doubles and put the skills we already know to work in that application.”

The Cougars have five freshmen this season, and Walton thinks they will contribute early in their careers.

“Our team is a lot deeper than it has been in previous years,” he said. “We’ve got a lot of talented freshmen and a lot of returning varsity players.”

A big thing Trinity has been working on in practice is being aggressive at the net. Walton wants his players to have more of an attacking mentality as they get set to hit the court this season.

“It’s always being aggressive at the net,” Walton said. “Approach shots, volleys, overheads, just having the bravery and courage to put the ball away, not just put it back into play.”