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New Tell City girls tennis coach has veteran team

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By Larry Goffinet

TELL CITY - Nick Weyer has experience beating Tell City as a tennis player. Now he is trying to help the Marksman girls win as their new coach.

Weyer, a 2003 Forest Park graduate, was a four-year varsity starter for the Rangers' boys tennis team, playing No. 2 doubles as a freshman and No. 1 doubles the next three years. All four years his doubles squad beat Tell City in straight sets.

Succeeding Bob Kreilein, who decided to coach only the boys tennis team this school year, Weyer inherits four returning starters from last year's 6-8 team.

He also has a foreign exchange student, Kathi Kassen, who is "probably our best player," he said.

Kassen will probably start at No. 1 singles most of the time, though she and some other members of the team are gone on spring-break vacations this week and will miss Saturday's season opening match at Gibson Southern.

Sophomore Bethany Peter, who played No. 2 or 3 singles last year, will probably play No. 2.

Senior Stephani Wrye played a lot of No. 2 or 3 singles last year but played doubles in the sectional. And Weyer thinks she could be more valuable in doubles though "she's probably my third best player."

If she plays doubles, Trish Solbrig is the top candidate to start at No. 3 singles.

Besides Wrye, other top doubles candidates are Alisha Patton, Jennifer McDaniel, Jenelle Clausen and Kari Gladish, said Weyer.

Patton and Wrye started at No. 2 doubles in the sectional last year.

Weyer thinks chemistry is one of the most important factors in forming strong doubles squads. "You have to pair girls who get along with each other and can mesh together."

Weyer said the three seniors and three juniors on his 17-girl roster are "pretty good quality" players.

He said several said they have taken some lessons or played quite a bit since last season.

He said the team's six freshmen also "show some potential, but I don't know that any of them will play at the varsity level this year."

Weyer said he doesn't know much about the Marksmen's PAC opponents. The team he is most familiar with is the conference newcomer, Forest Park, as Olivia Weyer, his first cousin, is the Rangers' returning No. 1 singles player.

Other than that, "I believe Tecumseh has a good singles player back and Southridge usually has a quality team," said Weyer.

Weyer's goal for the Marksmen in the nine-team conference is "to finish in the top five, and hopefully we can shoot even higher."

Eleven-time defending champion Castle remains the favorite in Tell City's sectional, so Weyer said it's "really tough to say" how well the Marksmen can do in it.

"We'll have to see," he said, adding that even if the Marksmen don't win the team title they might be able to get some individuals to advance in the No. 1 singles or No. 1 doubles tourneys.