High school tennis in the state came to a conclusion at a facility that has an affinity for hosting tournaments for all ages. For the second straight year, the MHSAA held a portion of its state championships, both team and individual, at the Oxford Park Commission’s FNC Tennis Center.
Ricky Neaves, the associated director of the MHSAA, said everything went just right over the three-day event.
“As far as we’re concerned, it’s a great facility with great people running it. We enjoyed it. We look forward to coming back, and maybe with even more,” Neaves said. “I just can’t say enough about the facility and the people here and how the tournament is run for us. It’s a great experience for everyone.”
William Foreman has served as the tournament director the past two years. He announced the pairings and logged in the results, among other things, over the three days.
“This was our second year of hosting a portion of the high school tournament and we couldn’t have asked for better weather this year. It was perfect all the way around,” Foreman said. “Players were checking in early and running ahead in our scheduling. It was all just a great experience for the spectators and the players.”
Foreman felt like the overall operation of hosting approximately 500 tennis players, which include six different teams on the first day, was more polished in 2017 compared to 2016.
“The players that were here last year were used to the way we ran things from before. Even the new players were a quick study on the methods,” Foreman said. “We added a few amenities, we tweaked a few things for this year that we didn’t have last year and that just gave an overall improvement to the event, the atmosphere.”
Mike Young, who is the athletics manager for tennis at the OPC, felt everything went well thanks to a great team effort with the OPC and the other city departments.
“It’s a great team effort from the city as a whole, Visit Oxford as well,” Young said. “We knew more what to expect this year basically. I could tell we had a different class come this year and some of them had never visited Oxford before. Getting to come and experience something different was great. I think they appreciated our facility and all the different things we were able to give to them. We were able to give them information on where to go and where to eat. They liked that our courts were right next to the activity center building where they can come in and get some fresh air, chill out and rest for a minute.”
FNC will play host to another tournament — the 40 and older state league championship — June 9, 10 and 11.
“That will one of the biggest league championships we’ve hosted and it’s going to be in just a month. The Oxford Community Tennis Association will the host organization for that while we will be the host from a facility viewpoint,” Foreman said. “That will be all weekend long which means a lot of players all day Friday, Saturday and most of the day on Sunday. This time of year, when the weather is nice, and the weather has been nice already, we’ve been busier than usual. We have junior team tennis that we will running matches with. We have two adult league teams this summer as well as summer camps in the mornings. It’s a busy time on the courts.”
Courtesy of John Davis and the Oxford Park Commission
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