Melissa senior John Lewis claimed victory in all four of his singles matches and all his four doubles matches in the just-completed team tennis regular season. For those accomplishments and more he’s just been named MVP of District 11-4A.
“Obviously, I was pleased,” Lewis said before practice Thursday at Melissa Middle School. “I work hard on the courts. I spend a lot time out here on the courts. It’s great to be recognized.”
Asked about his strong suits on the court, Lewis said, “I have a lot of consistency. Sometimes I get a little impatient and don’t show it but tend to be consistent and I actually have a pretty big serve.”
“It was not unexpected but it was a pleasant surprise,” Melissa head coach Brad Crawford said of Lewis’ award. “He’s as hard a working kid as I’ve ever coached. Just a fine young man. There’s no one more deserving than him. … He never gives up and he learns from his mistakes. When he’s not playing particularly well one day then he’ll change his tactics.”
Dawson Mercer is Lewis’ doubles partner, a pair that made First-Team All-District this season as well. “We’re a very aggressive team together,” Lewis said. “He has a lot of the bigger shots and I have a lot of the faster net skills, so it works out great for us. He can be at the baseline and I can be at the net. If we’re on our game, we’re almost unstoppable.”
Lewis started playing tennis in seventh grade at Frisco Middle School. “I started because there was girl I liked who played tennis – true story,” he said. “Then I realized I was actually really good at tennis. It just fit for me and I like that it’s just me and maybe one other person on my side. But it’s all me, for the most part.”
As for the girl who got Lewis started in tennis, she moved to McKinney and he moved on to Melissa. “We play her team every year, McKinney North,” his said. “We lose badly but we play them and we have a lot of fun.”
The Cards were preparing this day for meeting Dallas Roosevelt on Monday in the first round of playoffs. Melissa is the district’s No. 3 seed. As the fourth seed last year, the Cards advanced to the regional quarterfinals where they lost a heartbreaker to Argyle.
“I think we’re pretty excited,” Lewis said. “I think we’re ready. Our biggest challenge is going to be Anna. We’ve been close to them all four years so hopefully this year we’ll pull through with a ‘W.’”