uot;I remember back in sixth grade how things were. And now how they are — it’s a big difference.”
Tennis hasn’t grown at Classen because of Mims and his technical teachings. It’s been his ability to make the sport fun and help the players deal with the game mentally.
"Mims is a friend and a coach. He can be serious, and I’ll know when he is, and he’s also a friend that I know I can joke around with,” said No. 2 doubles sophomore Danny Vo. "He is very supportive and helps me keep my cool during matches.”
A strong performance would punctuate the resurgence of Classen sports. The school is known primarily for its academics but has experienced athletics success recently. Freshman swimmer Chelsea Ye won two individual state titles. Freshman Melissa Dang became the first tennis player to earn runner-up honors in school history last week.
"There’s a lot of hope for the future, and it’s been an inspiration, not just for sports but for the school,” said No. 1 doubles player Neil Pruthi.
Mims said he knew he had to stick it out for the kids. The coach said he couldn’t teach the kids about persevering through tough times if he didn’t do it himself.
"He’s the only coach I’ve ever had, and I’m sure he won’t be the last, but I know he’ll always be my favorite,” Vo said.
For a class-by-class preview of the boys tournament, read the high school blog at blog.newsok.com/highschoolsports.