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Returning young talent is the best kind to have. Just ask Twinsburg boys tennis coach Michael Porinchak.
The Tigers return five players from last year's 12-5 squad and three of those athletes are underclassmen.
Twinsburg, entering its 10th year under Porinchak, finished in a solid third-place in the Suburban League National Conference in 2016. The Tigers were 5-2 in confernece action.
Returning players include veteran seniors Preston Bell and Nick Carcione, plus standout singles player and sophomore Marco Nesic, and the junior duo of Darryl Nana and Soumil Jain.
Porinchak notes Nesic could be something special.
The junior first singles standout won the second singles championship a year ago in the league, plus set a Twinsburg freshman record with 19 wins.
"Marco is our top returning player, who had a great freshman year on varsity last season," noted Porinchak. "He won 19 total matches, which is a record for a freshman."
"Preston Bell is a very solid singles player and had lots of success last year at third singles," added the coach, whose Tigers open the spring March 30 at North Olmsted at 4 p.m.
Bell is now at the second singles spot after placing second overall at third singles in the Suburban League last spring.
Carcione and Nana teamed for second place in second doubles in the league tournament last year.
Jain has experience and a post season win under his belt in doubles play. He will play doubles and singles this season.
"We have high expectations for this very young group," said Porinchak (103-55 in his career), who has four other underclassmen on the roster.
Senior Erwin Nana, Darryl Nana's brother, is a newcomer to the team. He will likely be used at doubles play.
Other top newcomers are sophomore Zach McIlroy (singles and doubles), junior Ryan Lecaros (doubles), sophomore Mike Sterling (doubles), and junior Nathan Moeliono (doubles).
"I think we are a little inexperienced at doubles, but have many great players to fill those spots," said the coach.
"The Nana brothers will be there, Carcione, Lecaros, Sterling, and Moeliono are all very capable and will compete for those spots."
McIlroy and Jain will compete for the third singles slot.
"Both have limited experience at varsity singles, but I have full confidence they will step up when they need to," said Porinchak.
The Tigers were competitive at the Medina Division I sectional tournament last year as Bell, competing at second singles, reached the third round as did Nesic.
In doubles action a year ago in sectional play, Darryl Nana and Jain also had a big win.
"I am very excited to see how this young team will compete and see who is ready to step up and play a big role this year," said Porinchak.
Twinsburg has its first home match March 31 against Brunswick at 5 p.m. The locals visit North Royalton April 3, host Tallmadge April 4 at 4 p.m., play April 5 at Brecksville, and host Strongsville April 6 at 4 p.m.
The Suburban League Championships are set for April 29 at Medina Highland.