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Tennis: Capsules for Greater Spokane League 2022 season

April 2, 2022 Updated Sat., April 2, 2022 at 3:44 p.m.

Capsules for 2022 boys and girls tennis programs in the Greater Spokane League.

In alphabetical order. Records from 2021 COVID-shortened season.

Boys 4A/3A

Central Valley: Second-year coach Erik Flodin has just two returning letter winners. Sophomore Finnegan Scott catapults from No. 4 singles to the top spot this season. “With graduations and transfers to the Ridgeline, the team is starting almost from scratch,” Flodin said. “It’s going to be a season of growth.”

Cheney (0-7): Five letter winners return for second-year coach Dan Estock, including No. 1 doubles team junior Hunter Passey and senior Colin Chen. Estock said the program tripled in size from last season. “I am excited by the amount of players who are coming out for tennis for their first time this year.”

Ferris (4-3): Third-year coach Jim Utzinger likes his singles lineup, but will have all new doubles teams this season. No.1 singles senior Jeremy LaSalle reached the district semifinals last season, while junior Brennan Roshetko and senior Aryan Lofti form a solid nucleus.

Mead (7-2): 10 letter winners return for third-year coach Bryce Borland, including No. 1 singles senior Joe Robl, No. 2 singles junior Andrew Parker and No. 3 singles Dalyn Springer. Senior Oliver Hammond and sophomore Charlie Ring will make up the No. 1 doubles team.

Mt. Spokane: New coach Dustin McConnell has four letter winners back: seniors Max Molgard, Noah Romey, Jesse Lemon and Ryan Bro.

North Central (1-8): Coach Hans Liezen has five returners for his first season. Senior Jordan Steinhart is the No. 1 singles and senior Andrew Liezen is the No. 2. Liezen praised Steinhart as a catalyst for growing the program. “The team won their first match in years last season and has almost tripled in size since he joined,” he said. “We are looking to capitalize on that energy coming into 2022.”

Ridgeline (n/a): Boys basketball coach Freddie Rehkow does double-duty with the tennis team. “Being a new school and new program, we will be young and really be trying to find ourselves as a program. We have some amazing young men who are working hard and they will go out and compete each and every match.” Tyler Baker, Zander Plum and Braydon Harris will lead the young Falcons.

2A

Clarkston (2-5): Five letter winners return for seventh-year coach John Kowatsch, including No. 1 doubles team Norbert Kulesza and Brayden Woods, both seniors. Junior Aiden Schnatterle could emerge at No. 1 singles. “We are still very inexperienced, but our players are eager,” Kowatsch said. “They are hard-working and have strong character.”

Rogers (2-13): Coach Miles Moffitt likes his numbers this season and praises his volunteer coaches. Four seniors provide leadership: Kenny Ha, Zach Lopez, Strajhinja Spremo and Tony Giron. “To be competitive we need to level up our mechanical ability in shot making and get all the kids on board with our singles gameplan,” Moffitt said.

Pullman (9-0): The Greyhounds look to defend their 2A title with nine letter winners back for fifth-year coach Cody Wendt, led by defending doubles champions Connor Lee/Ambrose Wang, both seniors. No. 1 singles junior Vijay Lin was a district finalist. Last year’s team was so dominant, Pullman players faced off in singles and doubles finals.

Shadle Park (5-2): Last year’s No. 1 singles Cameron Picicci went out for track, so co-coaches Scott Stalder and Adam Poush look to built with four that did return. Senior singles players Mathew Nitchman and Elias Garcia-Montufar will be counted on as leaders. “We will need our younger players to step up and fill the void left behind by the graduation/departure of five varsity players,” Stalder said.

Girls 4A/3A

Central Valley: New coach Kevin Proszek has seven letter winner back from last year’s team tp build upon. “We have a young squad with five to six players having club experience,” he said. “We possess strong technical skills, court awareness, determination and a winning attitude.” Seniors Annemarie Rau and Nancy He will be competitive in singles.

Cheney (1-6): Just two letter winners return for first-year coach Linnea Love. Senior Adrianna Wood will be the No. 1 singles, with sophomore Paige Lacey and junior Valerie Hanes in order. “We had a large turnout in numbers this year, enough to have a full JV team,” Love said. “It’s a large group of newcomers with athleticism and will contribute to building a team this year.”

Gonzaga Prep (8-1): Nine letter winners return for third-year coach Jason Chapman, including all-league first-team No. 1 singles junior Juliet McFarland and first-team all-league doubles team Carly Walton and Kate Palelek, both juniors. “We are returning all players but one,” Chapman said. “To be competitive we need to be mentally strong.”

Lewis and Clark (0-6): “For two years straight, LC girls tennis has graduated eight of their 10 varsity players,” first-year coach Kate Burns said. “It’s another rebuilding year.” The Tigers more than doubled their turnout from 2021, from 24 to 60. “We have just two players returning who played low varsity last year,” Burns said. “We’re setting realistic goals.”

Mt. Spokane (5-2): Third-year coach Jacob Fry lost a couple of players with state experience to graduation, but brings back seven letter winners, including No. 1 singles senior Makenna Green, who was a district doubles champ last season.

Ridgeline (n/a): First-year coach Russ Tarmann is enthused about the program. “Out team outlook is great,” he said. “We are a young team that is coachable. Our junior players are competitive – they have stepped into roles as mentors for the freshmen and sophomores. The team will grow and gain experience over the next few years.” Junior Gabbriella Longo was all-league second team for Central Valley last year.

University: The defending champs have letter winners returning for coach Julene Osborn, entering her 19th season. First-team all-league No. 1 singles Gretchen Drews returns for her senior season, while juniors Allison Knight and Sami Stachofsky should form a tough No. 1 doubles. “We won the league last year and we picked up a great No. 2 singles player in freshman Kailee Alteneder so I think we will come out stronger this season,” Osborn said.

2A

Clarkston (10-2): Third-year coach Margie Denton has four starters and eight letter winners back, including No. 1 singles Clarie Teasley and No. 2 singles Maggie Ogden.

East Valley: First-year coach Tom Griner has nine letter winners back, headlined by No. 1 singles Tiffany Phout, looking to return to state. Fellow seniors Molly Vinyard and Ahtena Lyons-Huss form a solid trio of singles players. “With the couple of COVID years, we had no newcomers out to play and will be hurting for depth,” Griner said.

Pullman (9-0): The Greyhounds were GSL champs last year and have eight letter winners back, including 2A singles champ junior Gwyn Heim and doubles champ senior Audrey Pitzer. “Coming off an undefeated league title, we bring back a solid core,” sixth-year coach Dan Vollmer said.

Shadle Park: Fifth-year coach Shahid Quidwai saw eight letter winners graduate. Returning players with experience include senior Alyssa Smith and juniors Emma Hill and Aliya Alexander. “We are young in the sense of varsity level matches,” Quidwai said. “We will need to step up and be competitive from the start and improve every match.”

West Valley (5-2): Clay Nelson enters his 23rd season coaching at WV with six letter winners back, including senior Kendall Nordhous and juniors Natalie Abbott, Carlie Kemp and Addy Palmer. “We have lots of girls that are just learning but very excited to improve,” Nelson said.

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