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Tennis teams ready to start season

Mike Vidakovich
Special to the Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS ” Glenwood tennis coach Phyllis Zilm admits that her girls have spent as much time shoveling snow in preparation for the upcoming season as they have practicing tennis.

“Absolutely,” said Zilm, who is starting her 12th season as head coach of the program. “We’ve even had several parents come out to help shovel the courts, and a guy from the city parks department came and helped with his big snowblower.”

Practice started on Feb. 19 for the Demon tennis hopefuls, and since that time, they have been working out in various venues in order to sharpen their game and avoid the cold and snow.



“We started practicing in the high school cafeteria doing some drills and hitting, then we went out to the Glenwood Middle School gym,’ said Zilm.

With such limited playing time on the courts, Zilm is still in the process of trying to determine who her varsity will be, let alone filling in names for who will occupy the various singles and doubles spots on her team.



“It’s hard to tell right now who will be playing where,” said Zilm. “We’ve had such a rough start with the weather.”

Zilm knows she can’t count on the fickle Colorado weather, but she will be counting heavily on a group of returning seniors who should carry the majority of the workload for her team this spring.

Tess Kennedy, Taylor Smith, Megan McGavock, Teka Israel, Haylie Westphal, Brie Carmer, Libby Sundeen, Siobhan Sullivan and Jackie Nickel will bring experience and leadership to the table for the Demons. Zilm is also expecting sophomores Madison McCallum and CRMS student Courtney Bender to contribute.

Even with the lack of court time for her players and the uncertainty that looms over several positions, Zilm is anxious for Saturday’s season-opening match in Delta.

“These girls are hard workers and smart tennis players. They should be able to hold their own against most teams,” said Zilm.

Zilm will be assisted this season by LeeAnn McCallum and Scott Loeffler.

Roaring Fork hitting court with new coach

CARBONDALE ” First year Roaring Fork tennis coach Eileen Waski is in much the same boat as her counterpart in Glenwood with not having enough practices on court to fully gauge where her team is at leading into the opening match March 14 in Carbondale with the Steamboat Sailors.

“We’ve been using the ball machine inside the gym and doing various drills,” said Waski. “Getting them geared up and ready for the real thing.”

The Rams will find the real thing against Steamboat, a team that annually finds itself listed in the state tennis rankings and sends several players to the state tennis tourney each year.

“I’ve heard they’re pretty good. It will be good competition for the girls,” said Waski.

As is the case in Glenwood, Waski has the luxury of welcoming back several key players from last year’s team. Seniors Ciarra Bristal, Elley McBrayer, Leslie French, Sierra Palmer, Estaphanie Moran and Celeste Comings will lead the Rams this spring.

With this being her first experience as a head coach, Waski will go into the season with her eyes wide open. The only thing she can put her finger on at this point is that she has a great group of kids to work with and is excited to be at Roaring Fork High School.

“It’s such an honor to coach these girls,” said Waski. “I’m really excited. They all have such good attitudes and have given me a warm welcome.”


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