After spending the first 2½ years of his high school tennis career at No. 1 singles for Columbus East, Seth Meyer dropped down to No. 2 singles for the second half of last season.
Now a senior, Meyer is back in his familiar No. 1 singles spot, and he has been a dominating force. He hasn’t lost a single game in five matches, winning all of them 6-0, 6-0, heading into Wednesday’s matchup with Columbus North.
“I’m on top of my game right now,” Meyer said. “I think when I play my best, I can beat anybody I play.”
But shutting everybody out wasn’t something Meyer had anticipated.
“I think it’s more a mental kind of thing — believing that I can win and having the confidence to go out there and win,” Meyer said.
“He’s had a great year,” East coach Jim Stone said. “It’s mental with Seth. He’s so much more confident.”
Meyer’s biggest gains during the offseason came from the serving line. Stone now estimates Meyer’s top serves at better than 100 mph.
“He’s a little bit more consistent,” Stone said. “His serve is a little bit harder. Your shot selection is that much better if you’re confident.
He’s a lot stronger in that area than he has been.”
“I really like my serving,” Meyer said. “I feel like it’s improved a lot. I’ve picked up a lot of speed on it. That’s probably my biggest strength.”
Despite Meyer’s big gains as a player, he may not play tennis in college. He wants to go to Purdue and major in agriculture.
“It might be tough to get a scholarship,” Meyer said. “I might try to walk on or something like that.”
“He’s one of those kids that doesn’t derive his self-esteem or his identity from tennis,” Stone said. “It’s just something he does. He’s able to have fun. If I could get all the kids to have half as much fun as he does, they’d play a little bit more relaxed.”
If the Olympians aren’t relaxed, they haven’t shown it this season. They’re 5-0 going into the match with North.
“Collectively as a team, we’ve all played pretty well,” Meyer said. “We haven’t really been tested that much, so I think when we play North, it will be a tough match.”
For East to win its first sectional since Meyer’s freshman year, it will most likely have to get past the Bull Dogs again. If the Olympians fall to North, Meyer could still advance in the individual singles tournament if he goes unbeaten in the sectional.
“Obviously, he has to get by Anthony Sanders at North,” Stone said. “That was one of the things I told him at the beginning — if he wins that match, I think he could do pretty well in the individual tournament.”
“We want to beat North, but we really want to win (Hoosier Hills) conference this year,” Meyer said. “We think we can win sectional this year and go on even farther than that.”