Featured Tennis 

Marble Falls tennis opens courts for competition, improvement

Tennis players of all ages converge on the Charlie and Nancy Herrington Tennis Center on the Marble Falls High School campus each Monday and Wednesday to play a set or two.

And for the Mustangs and Lady Mustangs, to get ready for the 2023-24 season.

Head coach Sam Whitley has invited players from Faith Academy of Marble Falls, Burnet and Lago Vista to play, too. Burnet players Tatum Salinas, who advanced to the Class 4A state tournament in girls doubles with partner Aly Van Zandt, and Nick Dietrich participate and head coach Nate Redman assists Whitley. Salinas and Van Zandt won the District 24-4A girls doubles district title last season.

Among the Marble Falls players competing are reigning District 24-4A boys singles champion Cooper Womack, teammate Nevaeh Nelson (Montoya), Grant Nagel, parents, siblings and graduates. In all, the evenings draw about a dozen high school players and about 20 individuals.

“It’s an open court,” Whitley said. “They’ll come out and have a competition and play. I have some who show up on a regular basis and some who show up every once in a while. It’s an opportunity to come out in the heat and get in shape.”

Whitley said he may see something that he tells the Burnet players, while Redman performs the same duty for Marble Falls.

“It’s usually strategy,” he said.

They mix up the players, allowing all ages to face one another. Whitley believes that will make the matches more competitive and gives each athlete a chance to get better.

“At some point, you know who the strong players are on your team,” the Marble Falls coach said. “If you always have your No. 1 and No. 2 playing, it gets boring. You want to play different people. I have older kids and adults playing against our kids. We’re getting a lot of competition, too. I’m trying to match them up in talent and strength level.”

Whitley offered a similar program last summer that drew Hayden Gasaway, Nelson (Montoya) and Womack, who made the all-district team.

“Tennis is a year-around sport,” he said. “I want to encourage the kids to come out. I have very few kids. At some point, it’s going to catch on. I don’t require anyone to be there; I encourage them to come out and play. I’d like to see more of our kids show up. When you show up, it helps you get better.”

Watch videos on Highland Lakes sports by going to Fierro’s YouTube channel and searching for The Broad Podcaster. Please like, subscribe and share.

Related posts

Leave a Comment