Fall prep preview | Oak Harbor tennis

The Oak Harbor High School tennis team headed into the 2011 season with an untested lineup and the young Wildcats struggled. This year an experienced singles corps should help Oak Harbor improve on its 2-14 record.

Topping the list of returnees is multi-letter winner senior Will Southard who will move up from third singles to take over the No. 1 spot this fall.

Senior David Kusnick, who played first doubles last year, is set to play No. 2 singles.

Sophomore Carter Saar, who played second singles much of last season, is slated to play in the No. 3 slot.

Junior Harrison Miller, who bounced between singles and doubles play in the past, will play No. 4 singles.

Three other lettermen -- senior Sean Kelley, junior Antonio Unpingco and sophomore Tom Dale -- return and will help make up the three doubles teams.

Key newcomers, according to coach Horace Mells, are senior Keifer Herman and juniors Casiano Atienza, Ziwei Peng, Jose Dimaculangan and Jozef Mendoza, and they should help fill out the doubles teams.

Mells said, “Our four singles players have shown great improvement since last season and should be competitive in the majority of their matches.

“Even though all but two of our doubles players are first time varsity, they should also be competitive by the start of the season and continue to raise their level of play during the season.”

Mells added, “Our goal is to work hard and finish on top of our division.”

Oak Harbor starts the season on the road with nonleague matches at Lake Stevens Wednesday, Sept. 5, and Mountlake Terrace Friday, Sept. 7, at 3:30 p.m..

The first home match, and the league opener, follows at 3:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 10, with Stanwood.

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