Sports Sunday

A sellout crowd wasn’t on hand like the one you’d find surrounding centre court at Wimbledon.

However, all six courts at Oak Harbor High School were filled with doubles and mixed doubles players and in some instances, the competition was just as intense as you’d find in merry old England.

It was the regular Sunday afternoon session of the Oak Harbor Racket Club and the majority of the players were taking their game seriously working on drop shots and cross-court volleys.

Club President Chuck Niedzialkowski said there are normally 60 active players who participate.

“We also have 10 of our league players who aren’t here today so at any given time, we could have as many as 75 to 80 players,” he said.

The club plays on the high school courts every Sunday afternoon from 1 to 3 p.m.

“We also play league matches during the week,” Niedzialkowski said.

Adults of all ages, both men and women, were present and the club is in the process of gearing up for the annual two-day Island Cup match scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, July 28 and 29.

“The Island Cup pits North Whidbey against South Whidbey. We’re serious about that,” Niedzialkowski said with a laugh. “We play Saturday in Langley and Sunday’s match will be here in Oak Harbor.”

At Fort Nugent Park, young men and women from Oak Harbor and Coupeville gathered for their Sunday afternoon pickup soccer game.

“We play from 2 to 4 p.m. every Sunday,” Kristy Dutton said. “Most of the players are on select teams and Sunday afternoon is a good time for everyone to get together, have some fun and play some soccer. The only time we don’t play is when the kids are in a tournament.”

Most of the players are on U-15 and above select teams and several of them either played or plan to play high school soccer in the fall.

Jordan Boucher and Morgan Dutton, both of whom will be incoming freshmen at Oak Harbor High School, said they were excited about playing high school soccer for the Wildcat girls team.

“I think it’s going to be fun,” Boucher said.

Fifteen-year-old Evan Ameluxen-Coleman from Coupeville has a year of high school soccer under his belt already.

“I played on the junior varsity team as a freshman last year,” he said.

Recreational activities are available for nearly everyone living on Whidbey Island, all you have to do is take advantage of them.

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