For the first time since the late 1990s, West Deptford High School will have a new boys' tennis coach when the spring rolls around.
Mike Seeley, the current assistant coach for the girls' tennis team, will replace the now-retired Aaron Burr as head coach of the Eagles boys' tennis team, an honor that Seeley takes very highly.
“It's been really nice volunteering and helping out with the boys' team the last few years, but just being a head coach in of itself is really exciting,” said Seeley. “It's going to be an exciting spring, I'm really looking forward to it.”
Seeley, who chairs the math department at the high school, was a volunteer coach under Burr for the past five seasons. He has also been the assistant girls' coach for the last two years and is very driven to increase the prestige of what is a fairly solid boys' program.
Under Burr's tenure, the boys' tennis team compiled a record of 171-128. In 2012, the Eagles finished with a record of just 5-12, but played well late in the season. After losing their first eight matches, the Eagles went 5-4 to finish the spring. They were eliminated in the first round of the South Jersey Group 2 playoffs by Cinnaminson.
“The No. 1 goal is to win obviously, but that's going to start with getting people out on the court,” said Seeley. “My main goal is to start building a team with my younger kids, and then as they grow into juniors and seniors, have them field competitive teams out here and go after a conference title.”
Seeley believes his team will be competitive when the spring rolls around. He is depending on a pair of returning seniors, Mike McKendry and Jimmy Albert, to lead the team in 2013.
“We have a really solid foundation right now,” he said. “I feel really great having them as leaders of the team this coming year. That's really going to make it easy as a coach having them there.”
“I'm not looking to change, but I'm really looking to build upon what (Burr) did,” Seeley added. “If I can take what he's already built here for us and just get it a little bigger and a little bit stronger, I think we can do some great things.”