FRANKTON — Once flying under the radar, the soaring Frankton boys tennis team is now forcing the competition to take notice as it is amidst one of the best seasons in the program's history.
A strong foundation is key when building anything, whether it is a house or a sports team. Frankton coach Brett Sanders began his construction project four years ago.
“The first year I taught at Frankton, (this year’s) juniors were in my eighth-grade science class,” Sanders said. “They heard just about every day as they walked through my door, ‘Did you buy a tennis racket yet?’”
They did, and it is paying off, as Frankton is 14-1 this season. But, it was not an overnight success story. The Eagles have experienced steady improvement during Sanders' tenure. In his first season, the team played to a 5-13 record, then 9-9 and last season 12-5.
“When I first came out here my freshmen year, we didn't have the best record, we just kept progressing,” No. 1 singles player Lucas Bolt said. “I have worked very hard, and I know everyone else has worked very hard. It probably means just as much to all of them as it does to me.”
The senior is one of the leaders Sanders said has set the example for the underclassmen to follow in order to keep success coming Frankton’s way.
“Lucas Bolt works his absolute tail off,” Sanders said. “Everyday in practice he is going to bring his best and work hard. Every Sunday he goes out and hits on his own. He really shows those guys what it means to work hard.”
Bolt is just one of the core group of players that was key to changing a team’s mentality. Sanders praised that core for playing like winners as well as being leaders.