Girls tennis becomes cut sport


Tiger Paw Yearbook

Dalia Dzekic (12) smiles with racquet in hand at the Sept. 12 match against Lafayette.

After years of concerns about the unusually large amount of girls on the OHS team and a loss of assistant coach, the athletic department, along with head coach Bill Ebert and assistant Coach Alan Farmer, made the decision to make the OHS girls tennis team a cut sport for the 2017 fall season.

Last year, the team had around 55 players spending their time, Monday through Friday, practicing and playing out matches for their 2016 fall season. Between only eight courts, space and one-on-one time with the three coaches was limited. The coaching staff involved head Coach Ebert along with assistant coach Alan Farmer and assistant coach Kevin Green.

“Due to the great amount of players on the team in the previous years, multiple players did not get individual time with the coaches,” Chloe Dedic (12) said. “There were too many players per court, and many people played very few matches.”

With Green working at Blades Elementary instead of OHS like his fellow coaches, he was affected by the change in the start and end times for the Mehlville School District elementary schools. Instead of getting out of school around the same time OHS does (2:10 p.m), Green now is released at 2:50. This created a conflict because practice typically takes place from 2:30-4:30. Add in the amount of time it would take for Green to travel to practice, it didn’t seem fit for him to continue his coaching job at OHS.

The tennis team dropped their numbers by going from over 50 girls from last season to around 30 this season with the cuts. It has proved to be a big improvement among the team.

“I think having fewer students on the tennis team has really benefitted the players,” Piper Talley (11) said. “The coaches are able to spend more time with each individual and people are able to improve much more than previous years.”

The JV season has been completed, but come out and and support the varsity girls at districts the week of Sept. 25.