ROCKINGHAM — Richmond Senior boys tennis coach Paula York was surprised when she heard the news and had to send out text messages to her team.
York had to quickly organize a practice after the Raiders had been selected as a wild-card for the 4A dual team state tournament when the brackets were released by the North Carolina High School Athletic Association Monday morning.
Richmond (14-4) will take on Green Hope (17-0), the No. 1 team out of the Tri-Nine Conference, at 4 p.m. today at the Cary Tennis Center.
“We only had three out there,” York said. “Alex and Colt (Auman) were already practicing in Hamlet.”
During last week’s Southeastern Conference tournament, York said the coaches from Pinecrest and Lumberton were submitting their lineups to the NCHSAA for the playoffs, but wasn’t sure she should at the time.
“Sine it was taking so long for the brackets to be posted, I thought it was doubtful we were going to make it,” York said. “I knew we had a chance, but I don’t pay attention to the other conference. I know there are good teams in Wilmington, Raleigh and Chapel Hill.
“I am surprised we made it, but I also wouldn’t have been surprised if we didn’t.”
This is the first time the Raiders have qualified for the dual team tournament in York’s four years coaching the boys team.
“It’s a really good reward for our kids,” York said. “They have improved so much as a team, record-wise and skill-wise. All of their hard work paid off.”
One of the perks York talked about for her team was the chance to play at the Cary Tennis Center.
“The ACC usually has its conference tournament there,” York said. “It’s a top-notch facility and we are one of 32 teams still playing.”