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Westlake tennis shifts focus to postseason
by Maurice Dixon
mdixon@neighbornewspapers.com
April 16, 2013 11:10 AM | 1356 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
File Photo<br>Westlake senior Zachary Kennedy and the Lions have defeated their last seven opponents.
File Photo
Westlake senior Zachary Kennedy and the Lions have defeated their last seven opponents.
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Once again, the Westlake boys’ tennis team has handled its business during the regular season. Then this Thursday, the Lions will be the favorites when the Region 3 tournament begins in Douglas County.

And afterwards, Westlake hopes to make another deep postseason run and, this time, cap it as Class AAAAAA champions.

“We know the bar is set so high for us,” Westlake coach Neil Womack said. “It’s either state championship or nothing for us. We haven’t taken the victories for granted but we understand that we’ve got the type of talent that can take us all the way so we’re just trying to maintain, stay healthy, stay practicing and stay focused.”

Last season, the Lions advanced to the title game for the second straight year but fell short for a second straight time, losing 3-2 to Alpharetta.

“We’re ready to snap that and just go over the top,” said Womack, who is in his first year as head coach.

Herman Fletcher was the voice that guided the team to back-to-back championship game appearances.

Chris Eubanks came back to the team this year so I felt like our team got stronger and it made me feel a lot better about being the head coach,” Womack said.

“I felt like my primary role was just getting these guys on the court and letting them do their thing. Just helping them stay focused.”

As far as the recently-concluded regular season, Westlake has won its last seven contests en route to earning a 9-1 overall record behind the rackets of Zachary Kennedy (who is the team’s No. 1 and has committed to play at Clemson next year), Eubanks (No. 2) and Samuel Kennedy (No. 3).

“I feel great about this year so far,” Womack said. “It has gone as expected. That loss to Starr’s Mill was hard but we’ve moved past it and got our sights set on bigger and better things.”

Like the elusive championship trophy which doesn’t need to be substituted by some special phrase.

“We don’t have a slogan or anything like that,” Womack said. “We just go out do what we do and then come back. Tennis is one of those sports where everybody handles their own and we walk away with the win--that is how we view it and we run with it.”
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