Entire starting lineup returns for Gateway in 2012
The Gateway varsity boys tennis team returns its entire starting lineup from a year ago, and head coach Rochelle Seilhamer said the team has improved in a number of areas.
“The weather (this month) has been bad, so we haven't had as many good practices as I would've liked so far,” Seilhamer said.
But Seilhamer said her players have rolled with the punches through the ups and downs with the weather and are ready to get the season in full swing.
Senior Timmy Harris is at No. 1 singles for the fourth time in as many seasons, and senior Brad Shear and junior Joe Beiter, are back in starting roles in the other two singles positions.
Shear suffered a leg injury in the fall, and, Seilhamer said, he has been battling illness recently.
She said she hoped he could return to the lineup this week and challenge for the No. 2 singles spot he held in 2012.
Juniors Rohan D. Shah and Jim Park became a team at No. 1 doubles late last season, and they return to that spot this spring.
Senior Ronak Shah and junior Rohan C. Shah will be back together at No. 2 doubles.
Gateway beat Norwin, 3-2, in a scrimmage on Friday, and Harris and Beiter were victorious, as well as Rohan D. Shah and Park in a tiebreaker.
The match was a pro-set format — first to 10 points — and Seilhamer said she was pleased with the way Rohan C. Shah and Ronak Shah played despite a 10-7 loss.
“It was a back-and-forth match,” Seilhamer said.
“They really improved from last year.”
Seilhamer admitted that it will be a tough task to grab one of the three playoff spots from Section 3-AAA with perennial powers Fox Chapel, Shady Side Academy and Pittsburgh Central Catholic standing in the Gators' way.
Even though it will be a daunting task against the big three, Seilhamer said the team won't back down from the challenges.
“I like this team,” Seilhamer said. “They want to work together and get better. They practice hard. My assistant, Mike Quinn, has done a lot of good things with them. If we can get some good weather, I know we will see even more improvement.”
The weather has toyed with Gateway's schedule. The Gators are slated to play at section foe McKeesport on Friday at 3:30 p.m.
The Tigers are a new team to the section this season.
Gateway will host Fox Chapel on Monday at 3:30 p.m.
Michael Love is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5825 or at firstname.lastname@example.org