The Highlander

McLean Boys Tennis comes back strong

Tennis team returns after weak season ready to win again

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McLean Boys Tennis comes back strong

Captain Bryce Liquerman prepares the team for their scrimmage, advising them during warm ups.

Captain Bryce Liquerman prepares the team for their scrimmage, advising them during warm ups.

Captain Bryce Liquerman prepares the team for their scrimmage, advising them during warm ups.

Captain Bryce Liquerman prepares the team for their scrimmage, advising them during warm ups.

Jeremy Siegel, Managing Editor

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In their first match since the 2018 season, the boys tennis team came out strong, beating the Marshall Statesmen 9-0, winning all singles and doubles matches. The team has been one of the most successful at McLean, winning states two years ago in 2017. Unfortunately, the 2018 season was weaker as a loss of five out of the six starters left McLean. 

“Last year was pretty rough for us,” said senior Matthew Johannsen, who plays in the number seven spot. “We lost a ton of starters and good players.”

The biggest hit to the team was losing Ben Keyser, a veritable tennis star who played in the number one spot his sophomore year, leading the team to win states in 2017. He transferred to school in California to focus on tennis, and is now committed to start playing tennis for California Polytechnic State University.

“[Ben Keyser] was the reason we won states,” captain and senior Bryce Liquerman said. “He is incredibly good at tennis.”

After a worse than usual season last year, the team seems to be back to its former strength after clobbering Marshall in a scrimmage. The matches were cut short for issues with sunlight, but McLean still came out highly successful. Sophomore Harsh Dhayal led the team as the number one starter, winning his singles match 8-0 and his doubles match 8-2. The other singles matches were 8-1, 8-5, 8-2, 8-0, and 8-0, each a win for McLean. The doubles matches were  8-2, 8-6, and 8-0, each also for McLean.

“Overall this was a solid first scrimmage,” Liquerman said. “But I know we have harder matches ahead, especially our first real match of the season, which is against Chantilly.”

Despite challenges ahead, the team is only looking forward. The team is incredibly young, with none of the six starting player being seniors. Of the six starters, one is a freshman, four are sophomores, and one is a junior. The squad has incredible depth, with twenty five players total on varsity, many being sophomores and freshmen. 

Though this season may not be a states-winning one, it certainly is something to look forward to. 

View this month’s tennis calendar here: April 2019

Sophomore Oscar Tidd, who plays in the number four position on the team, gets ready for his match against Marshall, warming up with other McLean players.

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