Tigers striving to move up in EWC race

by Greg Ceilley
of The Review staff

HOWARDS GROVE – The Howards Grove/Elkhart Lake- Glenbeulah boys tennis team returns a good nucleus as it looks to improve on last season.

The Tigers finished sixth in the Eastern Wisconsin Conference with a 5-5 dual record and were 8-6 overall. HG has seven returning letter winners, led by junior Ryan Bruckschen who earned All-EWC second-team honors last season at No. 4 singles. Bruckschen is playing No. 1 singles this year.

The other letter winners back are seniors Caleb Holzman, Travis Eilers and Keegan Rhynas; and juniors Brandon Kushnier, Eric Reinemann and Chase Williams. Rhynas and Reinemann are teaming up at No. 1 doubles. The letter winners were all starters last year.

“We are looking to improve on our sixth place in the conference. We have a very athletic group of athletes who excel in other sports which should help them progress throughout the season,” said Elizabeth Hill who is in her eighth season as the Tigers’ head coach.

Overall, Hill said the team lacks on-court experience.

“We need to learn the intricacies of the game quickly,” she said.

“With a varsity lineup of mostly seniors and juniors we are beginning to gain experience but we still have a lot of learning to do since for many, tennis is a new sport for them.”

Hill pointed out the players she expects to lead the team.

“I’m looking for good things to come from our No. 1 doubles team of Rhynas and Reinemann. We will also be looking for strong performances from our singles players of Bruckschen, Williams and Kushnier,” said the coach.

Hill said the keys for the team to have success this season are to have fun, work hard and be open to trying new things.

She thinks defending champion

Kohler will be the top team in the EWC again this year.

“Kohler will be the strong leader of the conference. They have many players with experience and a lot of talent,” said Hill.

Kohler chalked up a 10-0 dual record in EWC play last season. Plymouth and Manitowoc Roncalli tied for second place with 8-2 marks.

The HG/EL-G co-op program, in its fifth season of existence, has two Elkhart students – senior Jade Henschel and junior Sara Niemi.

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