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The Dream Team

By: Abby Sikora

WHS Boy’s Tennis Team. Left to right: Parker Wood, Anita Sowers, Samuel Pereles, Luke Young, Grayson Wood, Parker Willetts, Avery Paiste, Nigel Stewart. Kneeling: Rakim Al-Hajj, Camden Miller. Picture by Heather Miller.

The Waynesboro Boy’s Tennis Team finished the regular season with a record of 12 wins and 4 losses, making them district champs two years in a row.

“The success is due to the hard work and dedication of every member of this team,” said Anita Sowers, the new coach for the Waynesboro Boy’s Tennis Team.

Sowers has been coaching tennis for eleven years now. She started coaching at Lee High School, then at a tennis camp, then at Wintergreen, and now here at Waynesboro. This year has been her first year coaching at Waynesboro and has given her some challenges.

“Given that it is not my first time coaching, but my first time with WHS, my biggest challenge is knowing the caliber of our competition,” said Sowers.  “I do not know how good or bad the other schools we play are.”

While facing these challenges, Sowers believes she has been able to bring in a more technical and strategized type of play for the team. Rather than just hitting and playing games during practice, Sowers enjoys working with the boys through technical drills.  The boys on the team appreciate Sowers and her hard work.

“Coach Sowers has really pushed us hard this season. She takes time to help each player individually on and off the court,” said Luke Young, a junior on the team.

The boy’s goal coming into the year was to make it to the state tournament. Now that the team has just made it to the district tournament, they are one step closer to accomplishing that goal. With all the stress that can come from these matches, the team works together to make this time more exciting rather than stressful.

“This team has helped me learn and get better in a fun environment,” said Young.

Coach Sowers believes having a well rounded team is important in tennis because they all have to work together to be successful.

“Every single member of this team has worked hard and had many successes. They all stand out,” said Sowers.

Sowers knows the team is good enough to make it to Regionals this year, but she said she understands that they need to take it one game at a time in order to get there.

“This team is a ‘Dream Team’.  I couldn’t ask for a better group of young men to coach,” said Sowers. “They are motivated, persistent, hard-working, skilled, courteous, respectful, and a lot of fun.”

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