Donnell returns to the court

It’s been a while since Oak Harbor senior Scott Donnell has laced up his shoes for a high school tennis match—seven months to be exact.

Donnell earned one of the two Northwest District berths to the 4A state tournament in late October. He had to wait until yesterday, May 28, to continue the season.

“I’ve been playing three hours after school everyday,” he said before Wednesday’s practice. “It’s hard, but I’m getting back in there.”

Donnell took the winter season off and played high school baseball in the spring. It wasn’t until the beginning of May that he was able to hit the tennis courts on a regular basis with coach Horace Mells.

“I think I’m about ready,” he said. “I’m a little nervous because all those other guys have been playing all year round and I ended my season in October.”

If he’s able to land his serve in play, Donnell should be just fine.

After a month of work, his service speed was back up to the 110 mph velocity that helped him to a 22-2 overall record.

“I’m looking to surprise a bunch of people because people don’t normally give any credit to anyone from WesCo or our district,” Donnell said.

Donnell, who becomes the first OHHS boys state participant since Mark Manucal in 1999, began play yesterday against Central Kitsap’s Francisco Carrasquero.

“He got a good draw in the first round,” Mells said of Donnell.

Carrasquero comes from the District 3/4, which has eight allocations to the state tournament, opposed to just the two from the Northwest District. He is ranked in the bottom tier of those eight players.

“My goal, I think, is to get to the quarterfinals, but ultimately play my best” Donnell said.

The tournament runs through today, May 29, at Central Valley High School in Spokane.

Expect results of Donnell’s performance in Wednesday’s edition of the Whidbey News-Times.

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