Downey tennis in rebuilding mode

DOWNEY - The Downey High School boys' tennis team started the pre-season with a perfect 3-0 non-league record and currently have a 3-4 overall record. The Vikings have lost their first four league matches and are 0-4 in league play.According to Coach Park, the Vikings are "experiencing a learning and rebuilding year as seven of nine players from last year are gone - the most ever." Coach Park also stated that several players are not playing due to injuries, family issues as well as grades. Coach Park maintains that last year's squad was heavy with seniors and the Vikings are experiencing a youthful reloading year. Coach Park has two returners playing at a high level. Former East Knights Jimmy Ziegenbein and Kevin Sattakun provide a nice one two punch for the Vikings and represent the core of this year's team. The Vikings have not competed in any tournaments thus far but will participate in a league tournament the first week in May. This tournament will last for three days and all players in league compete to finish in the top two. The top two singles and top two doubles teams will then move on to the C.I.F. league competition. Coach Park has seen great improvement in this young squad and fully expects them to get even better as the year presses on. Coach Park said that this group of players have "a huge desire to get better." Coach Park further maintains that "they all love tennis and you cannot teach that kind of heart." Coach Park concluded by saying, "I like the make-up of the kids we have coming back next year and we should make big strides."

********** Published: March 29, 2012 - Volume 10 - Issue 50