The New Life Academy girls tennis team will log plenty of miles on the highway this season after losing its home courts to the Tartan Park redevelopment project.
The team will practice on four courts near Afton and about 20 minutes north of the school. It will host just one home match there this season, coach Marcia Bussey said.
“We just tell people, ‘We don’t mind coming there,’” said Bussey, the second-year coach.
That shouldn’t stop the Eagles from another successful season, however. The team returns nine of its 12 players, including starters Jessica Gross, Tori Moorman, Rachel Breiholz, Emme Fry and Siri Nicol. Many of the players attended tennis camps during the summer, Bussey said.
“It’s fun to get back into the tennis,” she said. “It’s a wonderful group of girls.”
Moorman, a junior, went 17-4 as the team’s No. 3 singles player last year. Gross also had a strong season as the team’s No. 2 singles player.
Gross and Breiholz are the team’s two seniors and will serve as captains along with Nicol, a junior. Bussey hadn’t set a lineup as of last week but said she would evaluate after the first week.
The team will need to replace last year’s top singles player, Krista Haglund, who advanced to the Class A, Section 1 individual semifinals last season.
Assistant Jon Tretsven will again join Bussey’s staff, after coaching the boys junior varsity squad at Mounds Park Academy in the spring.