That the Northeastern boys tennis team graduated three players from one of the more successful seasons in school history was good news for the Jets’ Ohio Heritage Conference opponents.
Unfortunately for them, however, that’s about the only thing the Jets have lost from last season.
Northeastern has continued last season’s stellar run as it enters the OHC portion of the schedule. The Jets, winners of the last six OHC league titles, are 4-1 this season and 17-1 the past two. They also qualified one singles player and a doubles team to the Division II district tournament.
“It was one of those golden seasons that you need to enjoy when you have them because it’s awfully difficult to duplicate that kind of success,” Northeastern coach Jane Warren said.
Not that the Jets aren’t trying.
Junior Tyler Haerr, coming off a 14-0 season at No. 3 singles in 2013, has played well making the transition to No. 1 singles. He’s 4-1 after Northeastern’s OHC-opening 5-0 victory against Catholic Central on Thursday.
“That was a good season for him, but there is a big difference between the level of play at No. 3 singles. It’s a significant jump,” Warren said. “There are no easy nights. He’s up against the best player every school can field.
“Tyler is one of those players where the success he’s received, he’s earned. He truly works on his game during the off-season and tries to improve.”
Junior Christian Oberg transitions between singles and doubles. Seniors Will Foreman and Chandler James are key contributors in doubles.
“It’s a team effort,” Warren said. “Our wins, they’ve come from everybody.”
Against Xenia Christian in the season opener, one of the biggest wins came from junior Paris Vernatter and sophomore Robbie Fitzwater. The No. 2 doubles team won a three-set tiebreaker 7-5, 4-6, 7-6 (7-5).
“We’re enjoying some success. We’re competitive with a couple of the CBC schools that are bigger in size than we are, so that’s encouraging,” Warren said. “I think they appreciate that (last year) was a special season.
“I think at the same time, they’ve seen what they can accomplish and they want to continue to excel and play at that level.”