OMAHA, Nebraska — Rock Springs High School head tennis coach, Darin Anderson, may outwardly appear more suited for the basketball court. However, make no assumptions as the lengthy RSHS coach was selected as one of two coaches to head the USTA BG12 Intermountain Zone team which will travel to Omaha, Nebraska later this month to take on some of the best talent across the nation in the USTA Zone Team Championships.
Anderson, who enters his third year as head coach over the Tigers’ tennis program, applied for the coaching opportunity after hearing about it from Wyoming’s USTA representative, Peg Connor. Originally, Anderson applied for a coaching spot in a Salt Lake City tournament, but was offered the Omaha gig instead.
“I just told them I’m new to it, I love tennis, I have passion about it. I’d just like to go and learn and see what it’s all about,” Anderson said.
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As one of the two coaches for the BG12 Intermountain Zone team, Anderson will join efforts with Frank Adams, a coach out of Colorado. The two coaches will be responsible for team building, running some practices and mentoring during matchplay.
Anderson and Adams will be charged with helping the young competitors during their matches throughout the tournament. He expects most of the coaching he will provide will be mental and emotional support.
“A lot of it is going to be mental stuff, not so much technical,” Anderson said.
The team Anderson will be over will feature the best 12-year-old talent across Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, Nevada and Utah. A total of 24 players will make up the team with 12 boys and 12 girls.
The tournament is set to begin July 25 and will wrap up on July 29. In addition to Anderson’s team, the tournament will attract several other regions including Missouri Valley, Northern and Texas which accounts for a total of 10 states.
“I’m really excited to meet some of them and learn how good twelve-year-olds are,” Anderson said. “I’m looking forward to learning a lot more about tennis and how kids approach it.”
Despite his service to help the up and coming tennis stars, one of Anderson’s main purposes in the experience is to help bring back useful tools to improve his own tennis squad. Last year, the Tigers finished 16th at the state tournament while the Lady Tigers landed 11th overall.
“This experience is overall meant to make RSHS tennis better,” Anderson said.