Such is life for Marist varsity boys’ tennis.
The War Eagles earned the No. 1 seed in this week’s Region 6-AAAA tournament — which began at Piedmont Park and concludes today at the site of the higher seeded finalist.
The prospect of vanquishing their league foes would, of course, serve as the preamble to yet another shot at GHSA glory. The latter path is scheduled to kick off with first round state playoff action April 25.
But, first things first.
“Now and as we move into state competition, we need to take each match one at a time,” said Marist coach Tommy Marshall.
This isn’t your average War Eagles squad, by the way.
As Marshall pointed out, the 2012-13 unit features several “unique” qualities,
For starters, Marist’s singles lineup is comprised of all lefties. Next, No. 1 Garrett Price, a senior, is joined in singles competition by a pair of freshmen.
Those novelty aspects aside, the War Eagles (9-4 overall) have managed to again scrap their way into contention.
Credit much of that to team leadership. It’ll take that and more to help Marist finally get over the hump this time around.
“Our seniors — Garrett, Joey Hiles, Walt Prince and Andy Culley — have taken ownership for this year’s team and accepted the challenge of trying to get us back to the top,” Marshall said. “The past four years have been frustrating in the fact that we met the eventual state champions in the early rounds and lost close matches each time.”
As stated, the War Eagles enter the 2013 postseason fray with an odd but effective blend of youth, experience and grit — not to mention talent.
For a program with multiple state title plaques and memorabilia in its trophy case, the above attributes could collectively turn out to be the difference between being sent home in disappointment and going home in victory.