|Wildcats Tennis Club gears up for Laramie|
|July 31, 2014 Kaitlyn Krzyzanowski|
Photo by Kay Grote - Brent Mullock waits as his partner Larry Fritschie makes the serve during a club practice session Monday night at the Gering tennis courts. Members of the Wildcats Tennis Club are preparing for upcoming tournaments. One of their biggest non-local meets will be taking place in Laramie this weekend.
Previously known as Gering Tennis, the Wildcats Tennis Club is on the third summer under their new name. With somewhere between 20-25 players, the club has a wide variety of members ranging anywhere from 18 years old to 80. Their season is active four months of the year, which begins during the early part of May and goes until the end of September.
As a part of the Missouri Valley section of the United States Tennis Association, the club makes it to a few traveling tournaments during their time together as well as four local meets of their own. The USTA is the largest tennis organization in the world and the club upholds the mission of the organization, which is to Promote and Develop the Growth of Tennis. Team co-chairs Ronda Roth and Vince Moreno share the responsibility in hosting the club.
Coming up fast, one of the biggest tournaments for the club taking place in Laramie, Wyo. is right around the corner and several members will be taking the trip up there in order to compete. Roth mentioned the excitement of figuring out who was going to be there after showing up because many teams change their name at the meet which can leave many confused about who they will see until they get there.
“The event will be taking place this weekend and it is up in the air how many people there will be at the tournament. Some events have more, others have less. There’s not really a way to tell until you actually get there,” Roth said.
Roth expressed how competition is a little different than how it is here, but she believes it is an exciting experience.
“Competing in the Laramie tournament is a bit different from home. First of all, it is higher up in elevation so you will have to have more ball control. However, it is a whole lot of fun especially because we compete with people whom we aren’t used to seeing. We tend to compete with the same people around here so it’s always a nice change of pace to go to this tournament and play against another level of competition,” Roth said.
With non-local tournaments like this one to prepare for, Roth mentioned a little bit about how practices tend to go for the club.
“For the most part our practices are pretty laidback. Some are more competitive than others but we have all experience levels in the club so it’s normal to have some who are more serious. Vince even does informal lessons on Wednesday nights. It’s definitely a lot of fun, competitive or not,” Roth said.
With the club being pretty relaxed, it falls into the category of most clubs out there because they can bring people together in order to meet others who share similar interests.
“I think it’s important to have clubs like this one in our community for several reasons. I would say it is good exercise and this one is a lifelong sport that people can play. I think that shows in the wide range of ages that we have from the youngest being 18 to the oldest being around 80. It is a way to meet new friends that hold the same interests as you do. They are a different group of people than your best friends but they are my tennis friends and that’s great,” Roth said.
If interested in joining the Wildcats Tennis Club, feel free to give Ronda Roth a call at (308) 641-1977 anytime.