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Ashland - Local Town Pages

New Tennis Coach Wants Team To Have Fun

By Christopher Tremblay
Staff Sports Writer
When Mike Roman, the boys’ tennis coach, stepped down he left a vacancy at Ashland High School. Despite not having tennis experience Ryan Page decided to apply for the opening.
“The most experience I have with tennis is playing with my brother,” Page said. “Ashland was looking for a coach, being a new member at the school and having some free time I decided to try and help them out through the season.”
The new coach noted that although he couldn’t offer technique and skill to the sport, he could offer guidance as a coach. Along with his coaching skills (he has been a middle school soccer coach) Page has relied heavily on his captains to give him a hand during the transition.
“They’ve been fantastic helping the team and pushing them to play harder,” he said.
Those captains are junior Yash Pawnarkr and seniors Adam Rosoff and Arush Sharma. Prior to the season getting underway the new coach asked his tri-captains to give the team some basic advice on shots, techniques, and sound fundamentals. The three are now helping the rest of the team with their movement on the court and game management. Page also went on to say that when his captains are not on the court, they’ll watch teammates play and give them advice on what they have noticed in their games. 
At this point of the season, the Clockers currently possess a 2-7 record with the hardest part being able to string together wins. 
“We’re not getting those wins, but no individual player that the boys have had to face are above and beyond better what they are skill wise,” Page said. “We are right there competing and our loses are base more on our errors compared to being beaten by the opposition.”
Pawnarkr is the best player to grace the Clocker roster and although he has only been able to secure one win this season he has worked extremely hard on improving while bring a great attitude to his game.
He is playing in the number one singles position for the first time and is facing the top tennis players of each team. Page believes that he will grow with the position and come next spring when he has a year of experience under his belt he should see much better results.
Sophomore Maximo Gamboa is a notch below Pawnarkr and will take to the courts as Ashland’s number two singles player.
“Personality wise he brings the team together and keeps things light,” the coach said. “He moves well, but has been struggling with his serve, but it is coming along. One thing about Maximo is that he doesn’t give up points without giving 100% effort.”
Rounding out the singles circuit is senior Arjun Deshpande, who is playing at third singles. The senior’s strength lies in forcing his opponents to make the mistake. According to the new coach, Deshpande gets the ball back over the net to keep the volley alive, eventually hoping to have their opponents make an error in his favor.
Ashland’s first singles duo is currently made up of sophomore Daniel Lee and junior Aarish Chavan, who recently ousted the previous tandem to take over the top spot. The duo is a new pairing that has had great chemistry on the court. They are working well together and are always communicating while on the court to make adjustments in their game in order to go after the win.
After being beaten in a challenge match recently the senior tandem of Rosoff and Sharma had held the number one position for the majority of the season.
“Adam and Arush have known each other for a while and their chemistry is evident,” Page said. “Their abilities may not be the strongest, but when they are on and bring the intensity they are very tough to beat.”
Under Page, Ashland takes to the courts as a relatively young group, four freshman, 2 sophomores and three juniors, while only fielding the three senior captains. 
“Going into the season I told the team that I didn’t have the real experience of tennis playing, but I have the coaching experience. “I want them to practice with purpose, while displaying intensity on the court,” Page said. “Secondly, I want them to try and better themselves while having fun doing it. I don’t want them to leave this experience believing that they hate the game because it’s not enjoyable.”
Now that the new coach has been involved in just about half the season he is fully aware of the competitive level that his team is facing on the courts and what they need to accomplish if they want to find themselves on the winning side.
“I can now go out and prepare our practices more realistically based on the talent level that we are getting ready to play,” the Clocker Coach said. “With that I believe that we will be competitive in the standings this year and by having a younger tram we’ll earn that experience and be able to bring it back next year.”
While the goal for the rest of the season still remains the same, go out and have fun while continuing to improve, Page is hoping that next season will build upon this year and the team will be able to pick up some more wins.