FAYETTEVILLE >> Chambersburg girls tennis coach Bill Wissinger has been waiting for the arrival of two strong singles players.
He got just that this summer in Maya and Neela Krishnashamy, who join the Trojans this year and will play at Nos. 1 and 2 singles, respectively. Maya is a sophomore, and Neela is a freshman, but that doesn't deter Wissinger's confidence in the duo.
"It's so nice to have both of them here this year," Wissinger said. "Both are seasoned players; they both played USTA tournaments out in California, and both have started to play the local circuit here in Central PA."
Wissinger expected Maya to join the team last summer, but the sisters decided to wait a year and moved back to the area from California this past summer.
"Maya and Neela are really great, and they're going to help our team a lot," Trojan co-captain Paige Sideras said. "It's really great to have them here because our team is more experienced now, and it'll be a lot easier for us to go out there and win and feel confident."
Wissinger said, "Both of them are technically very sound as far as hitting forehands and backhands. Maya is tenacious; she's gonna fight until the end. Neela is probably not as competitive as Maya, but she's going to be a strong workhorse too."
Taking over the No. 3 singles spot will likely be Cassidi Martin, who played No. 1 doubles last year.
"My expectations for her are very high," Wissinger said. "I think she's a fighter, and we gotta make sure she stays that way. Without the pressure of playing a high singles position, we're going to need her to do well at No. 3, but I have a lot of confidence in her ability."
Sideras and Taryn Brechbill, also a co-captain, will once again team up, and they will compete at No. 1 doubles.
"I feel that since Paige and I have already played together," Brechbill said, "we're going to be even more experienced this year and know each other's games better. We're ready to win this year."
The whole team seems to have that mentality, and it has a lot to do with cohesiveness. Wissinger is entering his third season at the helm, and now feels like he has a good handle on the program.
"This is a cohesive group that will cheer each other on," Wissinger said. "No matter what the record is, they'll fight. They have some stability now, and they know my personality. They know I'm very driven and know a lot about tennis, and they seem to want that information."
Several players, including Kara Wiley, Emma Guare and Sydney Fischer, are still fighting it out for the doubles teams spots.
In addition to two key new players, the Trojans also have a new home. Chambersburg will now practice and play its home matches at Norlo Park.
WISSINGER'S OTHER CHARGE >> Despite dedicating a large chunk of his time to Chambersburg, Wissinger also coaches McConnellsburg's Bronwyne Mellott, who is the two-time District 5 Class AA defending champion.
Wissinger said he is trying to work on finding a way for Mellott to be able to practice with the Trojans, even though she is not allowed to compete with them. If worse comes to worst, she'll continue with private lessons with Wissinger at the Tennis Club in Zullinger.
Mellott, who just started her junior year, has won the silver medal at the PIAA Singles Championships two years in a row.
"You never know if there's a young star that has come up, but I think the world of Bronwyne," Wissinger said. "I don't think there's too many girls her age who are as talented as she is. If she devoted all of her time to tennis, there's no telling what she could do."