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By Mark Lube/[email protected]
The Gonzales tennis team is ready for new beginnings as a lot of players graduated in 2013.
“The kids are ready for a different and exciting year. We had a bunch of seniors on last year’s team and we have some young, new talent coming in,” head coach Sarah Kennedy said. “We have some freshman that did very well as 8th graders last year.”
Gonzales also has some athletes that are in their third year of tennis that are starting to get close to reaching their potential in tennis.
“It should be a pretty good season,” Kennedy said.
Lucero Luna, Zac Hernandez, Fernando Ontiveros and Shenan Owens will make up Kennedy’s pool for the mixed doubles division.
Hernandez, Ontiveros and Owens have been playing tennis since their freshman year.
Kennedy said Hernandez was paired with Josh Estrada last year in boys’ doubles and had a good year. Onterivos played singles last year but will play mixed doubles with Owens.
“They make a great team,” Kennedy remarked. “Lucero started playing last year but she has really developed into a tennis player. Both her and Owens are real strong at the net.”
In girls doubles are Alyson Solis, Katie Bonilla, Juana Sanchez and Kirsten Muenchow.
“Alyson is a sophomore and Katie is a freshman so they are still young and are developing,” Kennedy said. “They are athletes. Kirsten and Juana just have talent.”
Alex Finch, Ryane Gilliam and Valeria Aguayo will lead the girls’ singles pack.
Finch made it to regionals as a freshman in doubles with her cousin, Lynnea Fink, and started playing singles last year.
“Last year was Ryane’s first year on varsity,” Kennedy said. “She is one of those players that will get the ball back to the opposing player and make her make a mistake.”
“Valeria has played on the junior varsity the first couple of tournaments and just makes a lot of effort.”
Kennedy has just Eduardo Ruvalcaba penciled in for boys’ singles for most of the tournaments.
She said Ruvalcaba will make practices and tournaments when his schedule allows.
In boys’ doubles, Hayden Henke and Matt Grauke will be the main team for the Apaches boys doubles.
Both are freshman but did very well as junior high players, Kennedy said.
“They love the game of tennis and are out here all the time,” she said. “They have done well against seniors.”
She said the players are very dedicated to the Apache program.
Gonzales has seen action in the SAISD, East Central and Yoakum tournaments.