The Ottumwa Courier

Sports

April 2, 2013

Netters bring experience into season

OTTUMWA — The Ottumwa boys tennis team will not suffer from a lack of experience or a dearth of numbers this season.

The Bulldog team is festooned with veteran talent — namely 14 seniors who will supply Ottumwa with a steady helping of leadership.

“Our biggest thing will be depth,” Ottumwa boys tennis coach Alan Paris said. “We have a lot of depth.”

While Ottumwa is filled to the hilt with seniors, the team’s two top netters, at least in singles play, are underclassmen. The Ray brothers, Steve and Zack, will follow in the footsteps of older brother C.J. Ray, who finished his heralded career at Ottumwa last season. He advanced to the Class 2A state championship in each of his four seasons.

Steve enters his junior campaign after having a solid sophomore season where he served as Ottumwa’s No. 2 singles player, while Zack will make his freshman debut Thursday when Ottumwa kicks off its season at West Des Moines Dowling Catholic in a non-conference meet.

It’s been many years since the Bulldogs have played Dowling, so Paris doesn’t know what to expect from the competition. Paris said Steve — because of an edge over his younger brother in the experience department — will likely be the No. 1 seed, while Zack will settle into the No. 2 spot. Despite his rookie status, Paris has been impressed with the Zack’s play thus far in practice.

“He’s a nice little player,” the coach said about Zack.

Thus far, practice has primarily focused on serves and volleys, Paris said.

“We’re making progress,” he said.

Now, doubles play will take on a more central role in practice, the coach said.

In the No. 3 spot will be senior Jared Bohlmann, while senior Seth White will likely occupy the fourth spot. Senior Jacob Gardner will get the nod at fifth seed, while the six spot is being vied for by juniors Nick Sedore and Mitch Buller and sophomore Sam Kramer.

Ottumwa doubles play, specifically who will be paired together, is still up in the air, the coach said. Paris said the Ray brothers may pair up and the duo of Gardner and senior Alec Maas will remain together for a fourth straight year. The lively pair never suffers from a lack of charisma or vigor.

“They’re very entertaining,” Paris said.

Of the 14 seniors that decorate the roster, Gardner is the least bashful.

“Jacob is the most vocal of them all,” Paris said.

With C.J. Ray — who not only lead by example, but also with his voice — graduating last spring, Gardner has taken it upon himself to fill the verbal vacuum he’s left.

“He’s doing a pretty good job picking up the slack,” Paris said.

Maas and Bohlmann also are two of the team’s more vocal players, the coach said.

The Bulldogs will try to win the CIML Metro Championship this season. In addition, the coach said, along with qualifying for team regionals, he wants at least one of his players to earn a berth at the state meet.

Paris said this year’s squad really enjoys each others company.

“We’ve got a good bunch of guys,” he said. “They root for each other; they have a good team spirit. I couldn’t have asked for a better bunch of kids.”

1
Text Only
Sports
  • Albia Dirt Demons dominate competition ALBIA — To say the Albia Dirt Demons softball team is having a terrific season would be a gross understatement. Their season hovers above tremendous close to perfection. The Dirt Demons unblemished 13-0 record has made them the top-ranked team in the

    April 23, 2014

  • Blue Demons defeat Centerville ALBIA — The 11th-ranked (Class 1A) Albia boys soccer team made sure it wouldn't be the first team to fall to Centerville, as the Blue Demons vanquished the winless Big Reds 3-1 Tuesday. "We started off strong," said Centerville coach Tino Terrones. "

    April 23, 2014

  • 0424 OTT Sports Track & Field photo Drake Relays brimming with area track and field athletes OTTUMWA — The annual Drake Relays are festooned with area track and field athletes this year. The relays, which start today and run through Sunday at Drake University in Des Moines, will include boys and girls from a plethora of area teams including

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0424 OTT Sports soccer photo Ottumwa boys can't sustain momentum in 3-1 loss WAUKEE — Ottumwa boys soccer team played a marvelous first half against Waukee, but the Bulldogs were unable to maintain their high level of play in their 3-1 loss to the Warriors Tuesday. "The guys played brilliantly in the first half and it just di

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0424 OTT Jill Ardueser photo Bulldog girls knock off Ankeny on the road

    ANKENY — The Ottumwa girls picked up an 8-3 dual victory over Ankeny Tuesday. The Bulldog girls went 4-2 in singles action and 4-1 in doubles play. Senior Jennifer Klodt bounced back from a first-set loss to defeat the Hawkettes' Erin Peysack 6-7 (2-7

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0423 OTT Sports IHCC softball mug Region XI Softball Tournament to begin Friday OTTUMWA -- With an eye on the weather forecast for this weekend, the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference has changed the days when the Region 11 postseason softball tournament will be played in Council Bluffs. The four-team tourney now will op

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • 2014 Region XI Softball Tournament Friday, April 25 Game 1 - Indian Hills vs. Iowa Western, 10 a.m. (98.7 FM KMGO) Game 2 - Southeastern vs. Muscatine, Noon Game 3 - Game 1 loser vs. Game 2 loser, 2 p.m. Game 4 - Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 4 p.m. Saturday, April 26 Game 5 - Game

    April 23, 2014

  • On Tap Thursday Girls Golf Ottumwa, Albia and Centerville at Oskaloosa Invitational, 2 p.m. Davis County and Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont at Chariton Invitational, 4:15 p.m. Sigourney at Iowa Valley, 4 p.m. Van Buren at Central Lee, 4 p.m. HLV at North Mahaska, 4:15

    April 23, 2014

  • 2014 Drake Relays Qualifiers GIRLS Ottumwa 4x100 Relay (Sarah Schulz, Ellie Hammack, Sarah Thordarson, Erin Sheehy). Davis County Kate Birchmier (Discus, Shot Put). Hayleigh Sharp (Long Jump). Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont Tasha Alexander (High Jump). 4x100 Relay (Abby Boyer, Sad

    April 23, 2014

  • 0423 OTT Sports IHCC baseball photo Falcons stay hot at Ellsworth IOWA FALLS -- The red-hot Indian Hills baseball team rode a great start at the plate to an even better finish on Tuesday at Ellsworth. The Falcons scored four first-inning runs and never looked back, putting away a scheduled nine-inning game with the

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

NCAA Tournament Scoreboard
Sports photo reprints


Obituaries

Facebook