Solis taking 12 to 4A district tennis tournament

Ashlee Maldonado of Sunnyside may provide surprise upsets at the 4A district tennis tournament.

SUNNYSIDE — Tennis coach Macario Solis will take 12 players to the 4A district tennis tournament this weekend.

At the same time, he’s announcing the Lower Valley Tennis Club schedule.

Sunnyside will be in tough at district.

The competition in the Columbia Basin Big 9 Conference is tough, trained mostly in club tennis.

With the Lower Valley Tennis Club, he hopes Sunnyside will catch up.

Solis said there could be a Sunnyside surprise at district.

Her name is Ashlee Maldonado, a college-bound basketball star. She just knocked off Eisenhower’s No. 1 singles player.

“She’s a great athlete and really tough,” Solis said.

The tournament will get under way at 9 a.m. Saturday, May 12.

The boys will play at West Valley; the girls will compete at Yakima Tennis Club.

The finals will be played on Monday.

The Lower Valley Tennis Club will launch June 26 and go for six weeks.

The club is not a building but a concept. All of the action will take place at the Sunnyside High tennis courts at 810 S. 16th St.

Lower Valley is an off-shoot of the old Sunnyside Tennis Club. When that board tired of the grind, the club was dissolved.

Solis, coach John Rodriguez and office manager Alenka Plesha orgainzed Lower Valley two years ago.

“We didn’t want to see tennis go away,” Solis said.

The fee for joining the club is $40, but that’s not for just being there.

The fee pays for instruction every Tuesday and Thursday for six weeks.

Solis and Rodriguez will be the primary instructors, while Plesha makes sure all of the club’s legal requirements are in order.

“She plays tennis; she’ll be helping on the court whenever she has the time,” Solis said.

The club schedule is designed for three age groups.

Kids ages 5-6 will go from 9-10 a.m.

The 10-11 a.m. hour will go to children ages 7-8.

Players from age 9 on up will practice from 11 a.m. to noon.

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