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Stigall hiring fills last Charger post

Stigall hiring fills last Charger post

Posted: Friday, June 21, 2013 12:00 pm

By RANDY CAVIN
Press Sports
It is now official: Westview has filled its last vacant head coaching slot.
Westview principal Jeromy Davidson announced Wednesday that Blake Stigall has been hired to replace the departed Chad Johnson as the Chargers’ new tennis coach.
Stigall, son of Martin Middle School football head coach Mike Stigall, will take over the tennis program, effective immediately. This will be Stigall’s first head coaching stint, and he admitted he has very little experience with the sport.
Davidson explained it is difficult to find people with tennis coaching experience in this area, but Stigall is willing to take over the program and do what he can to guide the team.
“He does not have much experience coaching tennis,” the new WHS top administrator said. “It is hard to find people with tennis experience in rural West Tennessee. I would have about as much luck finding a lacrosse coach.”
When Johnson was hired as Westview’s tennis coach, he was also lacking in experience; however, he did his homework and studied the rules of tennis. That is what Davidson was looking for from Stigall.
“I have played some and I kind of know the rules,” Davidson said. “That is kind of what we are looking for and I know Blake will study the rules a lot like Coach Johnson did. He will get to know the kids and the rules of tennis and do a good job.”
The Westview principal said he has no reservations about hiring Stigall and he is confident he will work hard.
Davidson said the kids who play tennis — and golf for that matter on the high school level — will seek out pros to instruct them.
“At times, it seems like the high school coach will do more harm than good,” he said. “The kids who play individual sports will go to a pro who has that tennis and golf experience. They get the instruction from a master of that game.
“We are very fortunate with some golf guys around here, but not so much with tennis. There are some pretty good golf pros in our area that the kids go and get lessons from. There are some tennis pros in our area, but not many.”
Davidson wants the kids to have fun playing tennis and he feels like Stigall wants the same thing with the tennis players. He thinks if the kids have fun with the game, they will be successful like the Jackson area tennis teams and the Greenfield tennis program.
“We have had success over the past six years since I have been here at Westview,” Davidson said. “It is hard to get out of this area when you have to play the USJ’s and stuff. I know Greenfield has had some kids in the past couple of years to go to the state tournament. They have a good program over there.”
Stigall will be taking over a program that had four players make it to the second round of the 2013 14 A-AA singles tournament, the second round of the boys’ doubles and the third round of the girls’ doubles in the district.

Published in The WCP 6.20.13

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