Tennis Without a Court

Cougar Towne took the tennis court away and now the team has to train at another location. Learn about the effect it has on the players and the team.

Zoe Sauger, Editor-In-Chief

The tennis team’s court was taken away from them so the school could build Cougar Towne. Though, the team is not disappearing, they had to find a new place to practice. The team’s coaches decided on Nottoway Park. Tennis isn’t the first sport to have to practice off campus. The swim and dive team has always trained at Oak Marr, and the crew team trains both at school and the Sandy Run Regional Park. So it is something the team will have to learn how to deal with. However the major difficulty for them is transportation. There is no bus to take students to Nottoway Park, and not everyone can find rides. Some have even tried to walk to try-outs. How is the tennis team going to adjust to the new court?

This past week the tennis team has been having tryouts, which are taking place at Nottoway Park. So far it seems that the tryouts are going well and that the team looks like it will have a strong year. When asked what he thinks so far about the team and how tryouts are going, David Siamon (11) said, “Our team looks so much stronger than last season, and I believe we’re the team to beat in the state.” He went on to say, “As of right now the returning players haven’t even played any matches! We’re currently in the process of having the new players play each other to see who would be able to contribute to the team,” about how the tryouts have been going. It is a good sign that many people are trying out for the tennis team, and that Oakton will have another strong sports team. A newcomer, Varissa Kitchrayotin (9) said, “Tryouts have been pretty good. I think I’m off on a hopefully good start. The team is really nice and welcoming. They make me feel way less pressured.” It is good that the team is supportive of one another and welcoming to the new people. It definitely creates a better and more fun atmosphere to be practising with. Also, when the team gets along and is close and friendly to everyone the team will most likely play better.

However, some of the players had to find ways to get to Nottoway Park. Kitchrayotin (9) has a carpool or has her mom drive her. Of course she is fortunate enough to have someone drive her there, but what if you don’t have anyone to drive you? Siamon (11) also has someone to drive him, but one time he decided to walk. He said, “The walk isn’t as bad as I thought it would be, it’s about fifteen minutes. So not awful as long as the weather is fine.” It’s good that tennis is a spring sport and most days it will be fine to walk, but when the weather is bad and is raining or cold, it will not be a fun walk. Matt O’Connor (11) said, “Since I’m a junior I have driven to tryouts, and at times given my friends a ride. Considering the courts are so close I don’t mind driving there.” Turns out getting to the courts has not been a big problem for most people. Many of the returning players even enjoy the courts better than the ones at Oakton. O’Connor (11) went on to say, “The courts at Nottoway Park are made of a better,harder material which I prefer to hit on over the courts on campus.” Siamon (11) also said, “So far I actually like the courts at Nottoway Park more than the ones at Oakton! They seem like they’re higher quality, though that may not be true.” Even though the location and transportation to Nottoway Park, and training at an off campus court is not ideal, most of the players aren’t complaining too much and it seems Oakton will still have a strong tennis team for 2018.