For the first time in his three years as head coach of the Roncalli boys tennis team, head coach
Mark Claeys watched his team defeat Franklin Central in a regular season dual match in the
season opener at Franklin Central on Tuesday.
The win came due to perseverance from the Rebels players as senior Blake Amonett easily
dispatched his opponent to win his number-one singles match in 6-1, 6-0 while Chad Ransburg
took care of business by winning the number-two singles match in 6-3, 6-2. Jake Evans sealed
the victory with his 6-3, 6-2 win in number-three singles and Bryson Meek and Alexander
Pollard won a hard-fought match coming away with a 6-1, 4-6 and 6-2 victory in the number-two
Claeys said the key to victory over the Flashes occurred when the Rebels achieved early leads in
the number-one singles, number-three singles and number- two doubles. " Our experience
helped reduce the pre-match jitters against a team who had defeated us last year during the
regular season, and who we squeaked by the at sectional match," Claeys added.
The biggest impact of the match according to Claeys was how everyone played well for our first
match. He went on to say, "We were missing Michael Saling (senior) at the number-one
doubles position as he was out with an injury. But our number-two doubles is a new team, which
includes Alexander Pollard (12) and Bryson Meek (10), and they were able to get their first
victory in a tough three-set match."
Claeys did not hesitate to say which player had the break-out game for the Rebels in the victory
over the Flashes. "Blake Amonett playing at number-one singles displayed his senior leadership
by getting a big win 6-1, 6-0 and setting the tone for the other players," Claeys said.
The third-year head coach was quick to point out that it was a good win for his team, but it
cannot get ahead of itself with the win since it was just the season opener.
"The season is very early. We need to get more consistent, return serves better and get Michael healthy so that we can play at full strength against some very tough opponents," Claeys said.