The Leavenworth Pioneers will kick off the tennis season on Tuesday in a home dual against Olathe East.
Head coach Shad Langfoss said the team has finally gotten on the tennis courts in the last couple weeks. Prior to getting on the court, Langfoss said the team has had a lot of conditioning practices inside.
“Weather has not been too polite for our start of this season,” Langfoss said. “I have had numerous conditioning practices in the building, rearranging my classroom to accommodate some volleying drills and just meetings to take care of some clerical stuff. I know many other schools are in the same situation as us so we all are getting affected by the weather.”
Langfoss also serves as the girls’ tennis coach in the fall. He said the biggest difference between coaching the two groups is how each group prefers at practice.
“The major difference I see are the girls would rather do drills,” Langfoss said. “The boys would rather play matches. Of course both of the activities improve your game. Drills improve your shots while match play will put you in situations to improve your game. Match play definitely improves your mental game.”
The coach said the team is solid from the No. 1 to the No. 8 players.
“(It) will be difficult on my part finding the right combination for doubles partners and for singles players,” Langfoss said.
The Pioneers have 13 returning players, including five seniors who have played all four years of high school.
All five seniors will be key contributors. The seniors are Isaiah Casmus, Ethan Robinette, Will Messer, Will Franklin and Joseph Song.
“Brett Chapman and George Humble will also be contributing this year,” Langfoss said. “They have improved quite a bit from last year and I am looking forward to seeing them all compete.”
Leavenworth will be competing in the United Kansas Conference this season. Langfoss said the meet he is looking forward to the most is the UKC meet at De Soto on April 30. He said the Pioneers should be able to compete well with the conference competition.
“I think my team is overall very strong and we should compete very well with De Soto, Lansing, and Shawnee Heights,” Langfoss said.
Leavenworth’s opening dual against Olathe East is scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m.