Boys tennis has eventful week

Taryn Robinson, Opinions Editor

The Varsity boys tennis team competed in two meets last week, placing first in Salina and second in Kansas City.

The week’s first meet, in Kansas City, Missouri, was especially challenging since Manhattan High doesn’t often get to play at the same level that Kansas City athletes play at, which made it difficult for MHS players to win matches.

“We can basically take this tournament and apply it to state, since this tournament was actually harder than state,” senior Luke Craft said. “[Although we didn’t place as well as we usually do], not only is it going to help us prepare for it, but it brings our confidence quite a bit.”

Despite the challenging level, the varsity players still made due — even the ones with injuries.

“[Even though] I was just coming back from an ankle injury, the energy was there,” senior Dil Rawnaweera said. “We played really well.”

The second meet the Varsity boys participated in that week was the Salina South invite, which hosted numerous teams. Each singles and doubles player played four to five matches, making it hard to push through to get a win each match.

“We were definitely successful in progressing to state, as a few of the teams we beat today we will play again in regionals,” junior Kelton Poole said. “I think the only thing we can improve on at this point in the season is playing at a consistent level at every meet.”

The six Varsity competitors played in a Topeka invite hosted at Kossover tennis recreational facility on April 27. This invite yet again was a long and brutal fight to get through the day. The team took first overall, winning 19 out of 20 matches they played.

“There’s definitely stuff we need to work on, and winning doesn’t make it easy to identify what needs to be worked on,” Ranaweera said. “Regardless, we’re humble and hungry going into our next match.”

The top six only has three meets left: Centennial League, Regionals and State. As they’ve said before, their main goal this year is to get first as a team at state.

“Not doing stupid stuff like unforced errors — I think that’s the one part of our game that we can all do better,” Ranaweera said. 

“That, and keeping the energy going and not trying to hit 100 miles per hour winners,” Craft said. “So just playing smart.”