The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


August 20, 2013

High school tennis: Black Panthers, Seals have good numbers


And while his three singles spots are filled, the coach will have a slew of options when it comes time to finding the right matchups for doubles.

"I have a big team, and I have a lot of new players. I probably have 10 that are capable of playing varsity doubles," said Fravel. "I've had a couple of soccer players that changed over and a field hockey player that has come over (to join the tennis team). I have a real good feeling about these players. Look for some new faces doing new things.

"I was concerned because we lost four seniors out of our top seven, but I'm not anymore. I'm confident we'll be a good team," Fravel said.

Up the Susquehanna River at Danville, coach Mary Jo Baum brings back four starters to a team that advanced to the quarterfinals of last year's District 4 team tournament. Two of those starters are sophomores Linda Yang and Alika Lopatka, a first-team doubles team on last year's All-Daily Item squad.

Baum is confident with her singles players, crediting that unit as one of her team's strengths, but the doubles teams do give her some concern.

"It is early, but my team needs consistency during play. My doubles will need more time to practice together and develop balance and rhythm," said the Danville coach. "I'm hopeful that our team has a chance to have a winning season."

Even down at Shikellamy, veteran coach Mindy Hoffman has a bunch of experience back in the form of seniors Christy Eroh, Tracy Knorr, Kippy Palko and Christa Beveridge.

"I have a lot of four-year players back and I'm hoping this year they'll have a lot of experience. I'm happy with some of the new players and it's nice I have a freshman in the lineup," said Hoffman. "I'm just hoping we'll have a little more depth this year to help us out through singles and doubles.

"I just want us to play. We want to work on our steady game and patience, work for good shots and try to cut back on unnecessary unforced errors and have the girls be a little bit more aggressive," added the Braves coach. "We're just going to go at it ... and play hard to the end."

and see what happens."

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