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Jackson Hopes To Reignite Passion For Tennis In Mercer County

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Mercer Tennis is ready for a new season. Front row: Norah Martin, Elizabeth Ayala, Lily Leitenberger and Maddie Smith. Back row: Coach Carrie Jackson, Will Dean, Sara Lanham, Gracie Gaddis, Sara Dunn, McKenna Stevens, Josh Noffsinger, Luke Whitenack and Coach Leitenberger.

Casey Roberts
Herald Staff

The Mercer County Titans tennis program starts a new regime under new head coach Carrie Jackson. Jackson, a 2003 graduate of Harrodsburg High School, went on to play tennis at Transylvania University.

She describes the opportunity as “something I’ve always wanted to pursue.” Jackson’s first goal as new head coach is to bring back the community wide passion for the sport.

“When I played for Harrodsburg High School, tennis was a huge deal in our community. There were consistently tournaments being held and I want to get back to that. I want to reignite the love for tennis in Mercer County” said Jackson.

In her first year at the helm, Jackson has high expectations on both sides of the net. The girls team is led by senior Hope Lanham and junior Sara Dunn. Dunn was described by her coach as “one of the top girls in our region. Her power, consistency and drive to get better everyday is unmatched,” said Jackson

As an individual she expects a lot out of herself.

“I would say my personal goals for this season are to keep improving in all aspects of my game and continue to compete at a high level. One of my main goals is to win the 12th Region singles title and compete at state and win some matches there,” said Dunn.

Dunn was described by her coaches as the “perfect teammate.” She has high standards for herself but wants to see her team succeed also. “Our team goal for this season is to win as many matches as a team as we can. We all work very hard in the classroom and on the court. We also want to develop our younger players and get the program back to competing for the regional championship like we won in 2018 and 2019. We are excited to have Coach Jackson and Coach Leitenberger leading the program,” said Dunn

Dunn isn’t the only upperclassman that has their sights set on the region title. Jackson expects senior Hope Lanham to be very competitive this season.

“Hope has positioned herself to compete with the best that the region has to offer. Her work ethic is amazing and she is always prepared to fight,” said Jackson.

She and the other coaches  raved about the leadership they see out of seniors Lanham and Luke Whitenack on the boys side.

For more of this story, check out this week’s issue of the Harrodsburg Herald. Click here to subscribe.

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