Top player David Cotrone returns for another successful run
By Gian Louis Thompson | email@example.com
With the arrival of the spring semester, Flagler’s men’s tennis team is preparing for their upcoming season.
Walter Shinn leads the men’s and women’s tennis teams as head coach. Aside from coaching tennis, Shinn is also the director of the study hall for student athletes. Aiding Shinn is Assistant Coach Shuffle Hepburn.
The men’s squad is preparing for their season opener after finishing preseason competition. Flagler participated in both the ITA Southeast Regional and C.L. Varner Memorial Invite against teams such as Rollins College and Palm Beach Atlantic.
However, the men’s squad expects to launch their season Feb. 1 with a strong performance against Webber International.
“I think we’ll do very well,” said Shinn.
In their following match, Flagler hopes to show vigor against Armstrong Atlantic State, a notorious force in Div. II Tennis and the reigning Div. II National Champions.
Armstrong Atlantic defeated Flagler at a score of 8-1 in the 2007-2008 season with sophomore, David Cotrone, serving up the lone point for Flagler.
Cotrone is the No. 1 singles player on the Flagler squad and is returning from an elbow injury this season. Shinn sees Cotrone as a valuable asset against upcoming opponents.
“He is mentally tough and physically hits a great ball,” said Shinn.
Flagler remains an independent Div. II squad until their full participation as a member of the Peach Belt Conference in the 2009-2010 season.
Shinn looks to complete his team’s final independent season on a powerful note. “Our goal would be to play well enough to get an invitation to the national team championships,” said Shinn.
Senior captain, Kyle Maloof, offers hope toward this goal.
“He’s very consistent, very smart, and helpful. A model for what we want players to be like,” said Shinn.
“A very dedicated player,” added Hepburn.
Maloof expects to use his skill and smarts to, “Make it to nationals.” He also expects a little from students and fans, “Come out and watch us.”
Flagler’s first home match will be held on Feb. 5 at 2:30 p.m. against Armstrong Atlantic.