Long-awaited conference title a turning point for East Noble tennis program

October 1, 2019


When Aaron Edwards took over this season as head coach of the East Noble boys tennis team, he set a goal for his Knights to win the Northeast 8 Conference championship.

“That felt like a stretch goal,” Edwards tells ParkviewSportsMedicine.com. “Like something to work toward and reach toward; but even I wasn’t sure we were there yet.”

What followed was an unrivaled season of East Noble boys tennis. After losing their first 2 matches, East Noble rattled off 14 straight victories and sharing with DeKalb the NE8 title – their first conference title in 43 years.

“He had high expectations for us when not a lot of people did,” senior Lucas Denton says. “We’ve kind of been up and down the last few years, and now, we’ve kind of proved people wrong.”

Denton serves as Exhibit A in the team-first mentality for East Noble. He switched from singles to doubles this summer, partnering with freshman Max Bender. The pair became the Knights' No. 1 doubles, and played their way to 1st team All-NE8 honors this season. Joining Denton and Bender as All-Conference selections are sophomore Nolan Ogle (No. 1 single/1st team All-NE8) and freshman Vittorio Bona (No. 2 single/2nd team All-NE8).

“We’ve got some really good seniors, some good leadership from guys who have been around a while and know the right way to play," Edwards says. "We combine that with some very talented underclassmen who were able to jump right in and provide a pretty powerful punch.”


“We've got some new people, and we really just worked with the lineup,” Ogle adds. “We were sort of the underdogs [this season]. It’s good to come out and show everyone that we can. It sort of feels like this is a turning point.”


With their long-awaited conference crown clinched, the Knights move on to a new goal: their first sectional title since 2014. East Noble hosts a bracket bursting with stiff competition, including undefeated Westview, the undefeated and defending sectional champs who beat East Noble in the final a year ago.


“I believe in these guys, I think we’re playing really well, and I can’t wait to see what happens this week.”


East Noble is one of 26 high schools that partners with Parkview Sports Medicine for athletic training, sports performance, nutrition, athletic rehabilitation and other orthopedic sports medicine services. Learn more at ParkviewSportsMedicine.com.

 

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