West Bladen’s girls tennis team is in a rebuilding mode this year. Departed via graduation are 5 seniors from last year’s team that went 12-2 and qualified for one of the NCHSAA’s top 32 play-off berths in Class 2A.
Among the losses from last season were four starters. “That is a lot of playing experience that we are losing on the court,” said West Bladen Coach Jeff Atkinson. “I am surprised by our numbers this year with about 7 freshmen coming out, but it will take some time as they are still developing their skill level and learning the game.”
Juniors Alanna Ludlum and Amber Long are the only starters returning for the Lady Knights, and they are both playing in the top two spots this year. “They have been thrown in the fire, but I like they way they are stepping up to the challenge this year,” said Coach Atkinson. “This will be a rebuilding year for us, and I look forward to seeing how the girls progress during the season.”
As for the Four County Conference race Atkinson says, “I think Clinton will be very strong this year as they have all of their starting players back from last season. East Bladen has all of their starters returning, and I think they will be in the hunt also.”
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