The Havre High tennis team has produced a lot of talented tennis players over the years, and Blue Pony senior Blain Grisak is no exception. G
risak is a four-year letter winner for the Ponies, and the most recent Blue Pony athlete to make arrangements to advance to the college ranks.
Grisak is in his senior and final season of tennis, and has big plans. His first three years he was a singles player, while this year he has already made the switch to doubles. And while he has yet to make the state tournament, and was just one match away last season, this year Grisak is looking to make a pit stop at state on route to a college tennis career at Gwynnid Mercy College in Pennsylvania.
Gwynnid Mercy is an NCAA DIII school, where Grisak will peruse a major in Communications. The communications degree will hopefully lead to a career in sports broadcasting for Grisak.
Grisak has also had the fortune of learning and following in the foot steps of some of the top players in recent Havre High history such as current HHS assistant coach Shane Kemmer, as well as former Blue Pony state champion Kyle Miller. And he's taken those lessons and used them to help further his own tennis career.
Here's five questions with Grisak as he gets set to play in his final Havre Invitational this weekend.
HDN: What first got you interested in playing tennis?
Grisak: “I have been playing for such a long time. When I was little my parents would take me out and we would go play tennis. Coming in as a freshman, I just wanted to try it out and see what happened, and it worked out really good I think.”
HDN: What has been the biggest adjustment for you moving from singles to doubles this season?
Grisak: “Singles and doubles are two different games. Doubles is so much faster and it is just different in every way. You have to adjust to having a partner and to the speed of the game, but I think I will adjust just fine and hopefully make it to state this year.”
HDN: The Ponies are on the road a lot, so how important is it to play well at the Havre Invite this weekend?
Grisak: “It is very important, every match is important and they help you out later in the year when matches grow more and more important. Wherever we are we need to take advantage of matches, but here in Havre we get some people to come watch, so I think it is important to play well in front of family and friends.”
HDN: Are you more excited or nervous, or both, to move on to college and college tennis?
Grisak: “It is a little bit of both. I am excited to experience life outside of Havre, but very nervous to move away from family and friends. And I am sure the competition is going to be a lot more difficult than at the high school level.”
HDN: What about Rodger Federer’s game/style makes him one of your favorite players to watch?
Grisak: “His forehand. His forehand is amazing, and if I could have any one of his shots, I would take his forehand. I think it is probably one of the greatest of all time, and he plays tennis like it is an art and makes it look so easy.”