Bearcat Brawl rings in 2023 Tennis Season

Published 9:36 am Wednesday, February 8, 2023

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The 2023 tennis season is officially underway as the Bainbridge High School tennis team opened the season at home as they competed in the “Bearcat Brawl” tournament to open the season. Led by coaches Xavier Bell and Amy Thomas, the 2023 Bearcat tennis team is excited for the opportunity to build upon the Bearcat tennis program and see this year’s team grow close. 

For Coach Bell, this year’s team is full of competitors. The desire for competition and eagerness to win has really set this team apart in the first few weeks of practice and the coaching staff is really looking forward to seeing their players show that throughout the season. 

“I have high expectations for both the girls’ and guys’ teams,” said Coach Bell. “We have an awesome group of players this year who are working hard daily with big goals of region championships and more, in their own minds. This year’s group of players are so competitive.  Many of them have been working hard the entire off-season, in preparation for this season, and it is showing in a positive way at practice every day.”

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As the Bearcats opened with the Bearcat Brawl, having the opportunity to play in front of their home community while also being able to carry that comradery they have built early on during their season was a great opportunity for the Bearcats and they wouldn’t have wanted to open the season any other way. Just like with the Bearcat Invitational for wrestling, the Bearcat Brawl allowed the community to experience a sport they have not been able to experience before. 

“Opening with the Bearcat Brawl is always great for us, as well as the teams that come and compete,” said Bell. “It’s great for early team building, as well as starting to figure out where everyone will fall into the lineup this season. Our players always appreciate having the community come out and support them at the brawl.  It allows them to see just how important tennis is to Bainbridge.”

For Bell and Thomas, the leadership of this year’s seniors has been second to none. The way that they have welcomed the underclassmen and put forth an effort to develop a relationship off the court is something that sets this team apart from the competition. 

“This year’s seniors have been amazing leaders since the first day of the season,” said Bell.  They have been a huge help to all of the underclassmen, as far as reminding them of the expectations that Coach Thomas and myself have for them at practice. We never have to remind them to start warming up, because our seniors already have everyone together, getting everything done. Even on the court, they are great motivators to the underclassmen. They keep them uplifted when they’re not playing their best and are outstanding examples of what true leaders are.”

This season, the Bearcats will compete in 12 tournaments with six of them being on campus at Bainbridge High School. Coach Bell and his players are extremely excited for not only all of the home matches, but also the opportunity to bring home a Region Championship come April. 

“I am really looking forward to seeing the boys fight to defend their Bearcat Brawl championship, our girls find their way back to the top at the Bearcat Brawl, and how much better both teams will perform at the Wildcat Invitational in Valdosta.”

The Bearcats next home match will take place on Tuesday, February 14 as the Bearcats welcome Providence to the Bearcat Tennis Courts starting at 4:00 p.m.