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North Suncoast all-county boys tennis

Land O’Lakes freshman Colin Roller, a Virginia native, has lots of time to make his mark on the record books.

KERI WIGINTON | Times

Land O’Lakes freshman Colin Roller, a Virginia native, has lots of time to make his mark on the record books.

Player of the Year Colin Roller, Fr., Land O'Lakes

Roller, who turns 15 a week from today, lost only one set to a North Suncoast opponent all season. A year-round player endowed with physical upside (6-foot-1, 185 pounds), he dropped only three games in as many matches to win the Class 3A, District 5 tournament at No. 1 singles and earn an individual state tournament berth. At the state meet in Altamonte Springs, he fell to Satellite's Patrick Killeavy 6-4, 6-2 in his first-round match, but won a doubles match with sophomore partner Brandon Vang.

Most impressive accomplishment: Roller points to his 6-2, 6-2 win over Oviedo Hagerty's Miguel Caruaja in the 3A team region quarterfinals. Playing in his first high school postseason match, Roller struggled with his first serve, but not his blistering forehand or backhand. "I got to the net a bunch of times and just overpowered him, I guess," he said.

Future plans: Three more district titles? Perhaps a state crown? Roller has three more years to build a tennis resume for college.

Did you know? A Virginia native, Roller also has lived outside Chicago (he's a huge Bulls and Cubs fan), and moved to the area last summer. … Three days a week, Roller travels to the Brandon Sports & Aquatic Center, where he trains with ex-college tennis standouts Alex (Florida State) and Andrew (Miami) Golub. Former Australian Open doubles semifinalist Scott Humphries is Roller's year-round coach.

First team

Yuya Burkhart, Jr., Wesley Chapel: Fell to Roller in district final

James Mudge, Sr., Wiregrass Ranch: District runnerup led Bulls to postseason

Simon Toftegaard, So., Nature Coast: 17-0, 2A-6 district champ at No. 2 singles

Brandon Vang, So., Land O'Lakes: District No. 2 singles champ and state doubles qualifier

P.J. Watterson, Sr., Nature Coast: 12-5, 2A-6 district champ at No. 1 singles

Second team

Nicolai Atkinson, So., Sunlake

Garren Dial, Sr., Sunlake

Shane Docter, Jr., Ridgewood

Eli Escobar, Sr., Sunlake

Austin Hamann, Sr., Wiregrass Ranch

Honorable mention

Central: T.J. Armstrong

Hernando: Jesse Lane

Land O'Lakes: Chris Story

Nature Coast: David Cross

River Ridge: Nick Hill, Brian Mills

Sunlake: Lang Pham

Wesley Chapel: Stephen Diamantas, J.R. Nicolas

Wiregrass Ranch: James Reilly

Coach of the Year Dave Wilson, Wiregrass Ranch

Wilson's team, mostly devoid of year-round players, finished 13-2 and won the first postseason match in program history.

Joey Knight, Times staff writer

North Suncoast all-county boys tennis 06/01/09 [Last modified: Monday, June 1, 2009 6:40pm]
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