Miller to Lead Tennis Team at First Singles

 “I knew I had a good opportunity to play from the get-go,” says VHS first singles tennis player Jake Miller as he recalls his freshman year. “I was playing with a lot of the starters in the summer so I knew my ability was close to theirs and it was just a matter of how hard I was willing to work.”  

Time has flown for Jake who now has been named captain of the 2014 varsity team by first year head coach Kelly Flynn; he is excited about the upcoming year. His goal this season is to try to bring his second state championship back to VHS.

“My and this year’s team’s goal is a state championship and it is going to take a team effort to get there.” In his freshman year, 2012, the boys tennis team captured a state championship and Jake was starting for first doubles. “I know what it feels like to win a championship already, so I know what it takes in order to win another and can hopefully get this year’s team to accomplish our goal.”

Jake was first singles last year as only a sophomore and finished with an impressive record of 13-12. This is notable because the Hillbillies play a very tough schedule, competing against top teams in the state such as Newark Academy, Millburn, and Livingston. Jake is hoping to improve his record this year as he has been working this off season and gained experience from the past two seasons.

However Miller is not the only player expected to make a big contribution. Sophomore Mike Knothe will be playing second singles this year and as a freshman, he played third singles. With the new coach Jake says it is hard to tell where other people will play but other key players to the program are Patrick Cummings, Gabe Erikkson, Marcus McMickle, and Daniel Li. They are deep with youth as they only have one senior represented on the team in Daniel. They are expecting big things to the future and hope to continue their success.

With the weather and the snow covered-courts pushing early season practices back, it is unclear if the season will start in time.

“It’s a bummer because we are forced to practice inside when we all want to just get out on the courts and play,” Jake claimed about the snow covered courts. They are preparing as best as they can for the scheduled first match against Kinnelon. Miller claims that the youth of this year’s team is going to be key role to their success and they should be a team to watch for the next few years.