By MICHAEL S. ADAMS

H-P Sports Writer



The Westwood tennis team is hoping that Jennifer Grant’s experience can help the team in the Class 3A-Region III tennis tournament at Bryan High School on Monday and Tuesday.

Grant will be making her second straight trip to the regional tournament. Instead of going in girls’ singles, Grant will team up with senior Cody Brown for mixed doubles after the team defeated Westwood’s No. 2 mixed doubles team of Zoey Midalel and Jessika Liedberg in the District 21-3A tournament finals.

“It will be pretty valuable to have her experience,” head coach John Forrest said. “She has answered a lot of my questions, being in my first year, and she will be able to answer a lot of other questions.”

The top two finishers in each event will advance to the University Interscholastic League’s state tennis tournament.

Forrest said he has high hopes for his mixed doubles’ teams and think they can compete in a tough region.

“I think they could do pretty good,” he said. “They had a really good showing in the district tournament, but Groesbeck’s No. 1 and No. 2 teams are probably the strongest.

“I am looking for a very strong showing from them this week.”

Westwood’s strongest hopes lie in the hands of foreign exchange student junior Kim Tran.

Tran, who is from Germany, has played tennis since the age of eight and has dominated this season as part of the Westwood tennis team, not dropping a set en route to the District 21-3A girls’ singles championship.

Tran won the finals 6-1, 6-0 over Palestine’s Alexandria Boyd and Forrest said she has a good shot to get into the state tennis tournament.

“I haven’t seen or heard about the other competition, but she definitely has the talent to get through regionals and into state,” Forrest said. “She is a very strong player and has the mental aspect of the game. That is probably her strength.”

Westwood has spent the last week sharpening skills and practicing for the regional meet. According to Forrest, however, the amount of match experience the Panthers got this year will be more valuable when it comes for the regional tournament.

“Match experience is the one thing you cannot get enough of,” he said. “We have been out here every day working on our skills that haven’t developed and have put a lot of time in, but I think our match experience will be crucial in the regional tournament because a lot of them don’t have that experience.”

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Michael S. Adams may be contacted via e-mail a sports2@palestineherald.com

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