AHS Boys Tennis

Reilly McCann, Staff Reporter

The boys’ tennis team served up the Commonwealth District by going undefeated in District play and will continue to the Regional tournament this weekend.

“Our team goal for the season is to get to the state quarterfinals for the fourth year in a row,” junior Joey Michel said. “We have a tough road ahead, but we can surely do it if we trust in our abilities and play smart.”

Leading the team towards their goal are this year’s captains: seniors Doug Corbett, Boris Yang and Taylor Walker. Walker suffered a knee injury and is unable to play this season, but is still there for moral support.

“Taylor still helps me by being a good role model,” junior Jake Brooks said. “Boris is the team mascot…just kidding! He helps us by strengthening team camaraderie.”

Yang has played on varsity all of the four years that he has been at AHS. “I am the good cop of the team and Doug is the bad cop,” he said.

Corbett is this year’s number one seed. “Being number one and captain kind of go together. I’d say my responsibilities are making sure we stay focused in practice, just encouraging the team everyday, and leading by example.”

Rounding out the top six seeds are Yang at number two, Brooks at three, freshman Charlie Shepherd at four, sophomore Dave Grbic at five, and Michel at six.

One of the team’s strengths is their depth. According to Corbett, their four, five and six players are likely to be better than their opponents’ doubles teams.

The team has demonstrated this depth by not allowing a single set to be won in nine of their matches.

“I think we have grown a lot as the season has gone on,” Corbett said. “We’ve established what our lineup is going to be in the playoffs and I’m very confident in really every starter 1-6 and all three of the doubles teams.”

With an undefeated regular season, the team faces a challenge when dealing with more competitive teams in the post-season. The team played private school powerhouse Woodberry Forest as a scrimmage, but lost 1-8.

“It was a huge jump and it’s really hard to handle that,” Corbett said.

The team won their District finals match on May 9 against Riverbend with a score of 5-0.

Though Corbett couldn’t make a definite prediction for the rest of the season, he has a good feeling that the team will advance in Regionals and make it back to States.

Junior Jake goes for a shot in the teams first home meet.