By Tyler J. Scott ’12
Coming off their second state championship in a row, the Brophy tennis team is setting the bar high despite what the “experts” think.
“Everyone else’s expectations are that we are going to be runners-up for state to Salpointe,” wrote Kyle Chalmers ’13. “However, I feel that my team and I believe that we can win state. It is just whether we perform to our potential or not.”
Varsity head coach Mr. Bill Woods agreed.
“I think it would be the same expectations as every year that we would compete and be one of those teams that has a chance at the end of the season to play for a state championship,” Mr. Woods said.
The Broncos have lost five starters from last year after four seniors graduated and one student transferred.
Those seniors were Eric Chalmers ’10, Lorenz Laurel ’10, Chris Salvatore ’10 and Chris Lefky ’10.
Nolan Bauer ’12 transferred to Chaparral High School.
“Losing five starters from last year has definitely been tough,” said Alex Ozkan ’11. “The good thing about the tennis program at Brophy is that we have always had a pretty deep team, so even though we lost five good players, we have some guys who can definitely step up and fill that gap.”
Both Chalmers and Ozkan expressed the drive to beat rival Salpointe on their home court.
For Ozkan, his goals include a three-peat in state championships and ultimately, to have some of the young guys step up.
“As a senior, this season will be bittersweet for me and the other two seniors on varsity – Connor McQueen ’11 and Garret Nebeker ’11,” Ozkan said.
“It’s our last season at Brophy and the first, at least for me, to have a prominent role on varsity. Therefore, I expect some good things,” he added.
The Broncos first match is Tuesday, Feb. 15 at Mesa Mountain View and then they take on Corona del Sol at home on Thursday, Feb. 17.
The team plays its home matches at the Phoenix Tennis Center.