Head coach: Kenneth Griffith (27th season, All-County COY) Last year: 11-2, 11-2 (third in SMAC, second at SMAC tournament) Athletes to watch: Boys — Ronald Stith (Sr.); Girls — Azuri Hughes (Sr., All-County AOY), Mariel Santos (Sr.) Key personnel losses: Boys — Marshal Parent (All-SMAC, All-County), Alex Lateulere (All-SMAC, All-County); Girls — Melissa Nelson (All-SMAC, All-County) Strengths: This group has the wherewithal to persevere through moments of adversity. This is a tough team with good leadership at the top and a perennial coach of the year candidate guiding it. Its top singles players, Hughes and Stith, have opportunities to compete on the state level. Weaknesses: This is a young team that’s going to have to learn tennis really fast. The Chargers graduated a lot of all-conference talent, so expectations to match last year’s performance should be tempered.
PRINCE Burlack (Sr.), Alex Catterton (Sr.), Josh Hurley (Sr.); Girls — Madison Smith (Sr.), Michal Kattrell (Sr.), Sarah Deneault (Sr.), Paige Upright (Jr.) Key personnel losses: Boys — Chris McCormick (All-SMAC); Joseph Na; Girls — Jessica Foster (All-SMAC, All-County), Angelina Cole (All-SMAC, All-County), Kacy Baldwin (All-SMAC) Strengths: The core of this team, all of the players mentioned above, have been around together for awhile. This group of veterans have experience, a tight bond, and will be able to lead this team. With experienced players, comes confidence and this team should be able to push through tighter contests more readily than younger teams. Weaknesses: The depth of this team, behind its core players, are all young and inexperienced. If key players have to miss time, whoever fills in is likely to be someone still in the process of learning how to play the sport on this level. Boys — Elliot Etter (All-SMAC, All-County AOY); Girls — None Strengths: The Rams have highquality athletes. A few of those athletes are returning players with singles and doubles experience, and those players will be looked to for leadership. McDonough plays with high energy and because the team has developed good chemistry, they communicate well on the court. Weaknesses: This program has a number of new faces, so inexperience will be the biggest challenge, especially early in the season. Head coach: Mike Serpone (fifth season) Last year: 5-8, 5-8 (ninth in SMAC) Athletes to watch: Boys — Andrew Beauchamp (Sr.), Larry Johnson (Sr.); Girls — Sierra Early (Sr.) Key personnel losses: strong, doubles will be an area where the Eagles need work, along with working on communication. Players must work on placement with their shots and being more finesse and accurate. Head coach: Avan Smith (first season) Last year: 5-9, 4-9 (10th in SMAC) Athletes to watch: Boys — Adrian Paras (So.), Elijah Hawkins (Sr.); Girls — Katie Fulcher (Sr.), Ariana Coleman (Sr.), Lauren Charity (Sr.) Key personnel losses: Strengths: program. While most perceive new programs as weak and ineffective, Smith’s outlook on a program that’s in its infancy is that there is nothing to lose and everything to gain. Each players from the most experienced down to the exhibition squad wants to win and show up to practice every day focused.
Head coach: Tom Parker lack of experience will be a process for players to develop. Staying injury-free will also be vital for Stone and, as the season goes along, the players just want to be competitive in the conference that will feature very tough teams.