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Rain check

Duncan MacLean • Sep 5, 2018 at 11:32 PM

FRUITPORT — A week of intense rainfall is beginning to take its toll on the prep sports calendar.

Fruitport and Spring Lake tennis were scheduled to meet for a rivalry match away from the bayou at Fruitport High School on Wednesday, but the water came to them.

Shortly after beginning, torrential rain and lightning forced the match to be paused and postponed for Sept. 11. The Lakers already had built a commanding lead, hitting the break ahead in every flight.

“Our team is very strong right now. They were playing very strong and confident today,” said Spring Lake co-head coach Jodi Hussey. “Everyone is leading and that is nice to see.”

For Spring Lake, this season is about building confidence in a young group of players.

“We have a young team again, but they are out here trying hard and pushing themselves as hard as they can. Their hearts are in it and they are having fun, which is most important.

“They were playing with a lot of confidence today, and I hope they can continue that through the season. I hope they really start believing in it. They talk really well before the match, then on the court, you can see some of that confidence go away a little bit. I would like to see that from beginning to end.”

Fruitport’s tennis goals are a different story, as the boys team continues to struggle filling out a lineup. But, where the Trojans lack in numbers, they make up for in enthusiasm, a fact embraced by head coach Brad Busscher.

“We’ve got a great group that is working hard and pulling together their games,” Busscher said. “I’ve been really pleased with the effort we have had since Day 1. That has been enjoyable to watch.”

With a majority of the varsity team made up of newcomers, Wednesday’s rain delay was especially sour for the Trojans after falling behind early.

“Obviously, a crack of lightning and we have to pull them off the court,” Busscher said. “We just need some experience is what we need and what matches like this can come down to. We’ve got 10 kids and nine of them have never played varsity tennis before, so it is awesome to watch them grow and improve. We just need some more experience.”

The Lakers will return to the court this weekend as they take on the Zeeland East Quad on Saturday, while the Trojans will hone their skills in practice until they resume the Spring Lake match on the 11th. The next day, their O-K Black Conference season begins against Reeths-Puffer.

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