Feels like the first time
PERRIN — Ty Tarver knows as the lone member of his school’s tennis team, he needs to be his own motivation. He wears a T-shirt reminding him of such.
Tarver, a Perrin High senior, transferred to Perrin when his father David, a Mineral Wells coach, took the secondary principal job here. The junior Tarver, who played No.1-singles as a Ram, has made his presence known on the Class A tennis circuit by qualifying for the State Tennis Tournament May 16-17 at Texas A&M’s Mitchell Tennis Center.
Tarver began playing tennis at the age of 12 when his stepmom, who played at Abilene Christian University, introduced him to the game. While at Mineral Wells, he made it to the regional rounds his freshman and sophomore year but failed to qualify his junior year.
Since Perrin has no tennis courts, Tarver finds himself on the road 3-4 times a week heading to Fort Worth to use the courts at TCU and receive lessons. He does hit with his mom on SundaysTarver says his serve and his ability to keep the ball in play are his strengths.
“I like to make my opponent make the mistakes,” Tarver said.
Tarver likes to model his game after pro Roger Federer. He says tennis is his favorite spring sport but plays baseball as well, holding down the third base position for his dad who is coaching the playoff-bound Pirates.
“I sometimes have to leave (baseball) practice early for a tennis lesson,” Tarver said. “I have a tennis lesson this evening, so I may have to leave practice early.”
Being the only tennis player in a small pond has been an adjustment for Tarver, but he contends just having to “go with it.”
“That’s all any of us at Perrin do,” Tarver said. “We’re all busy doing many things.”
With Perrin not being a tennis town, Tarver says he is still receiving a bunch of support from his friends and teachers.
“With each tournament win, people here have been congratulating me, which is nice,” Tarver said. “I have a bunch of kids who want to go down to State with me.”
With the tennis season winding down, Tarver says he still needs to keep going and plans on taking part in some USTA events on the weekends before the tournament, just so he can stay active and keep improving.
Tarver is unsure of his plans after graduation, wanting to continue his tennis career collegiately.
“East Texas Baptist University is interested in me playing, but I’m kind of torn right now,” Tarver said.