Mexico tennis star signs with William Woods

Mexico tennis star signs with William Woods
Noah Harlan signs a letter of intent to join the William Woods University tennis squad. Seated with him at Thursday’s ceremony are his grandparents, Judy and Dale Hunt, along with his mother Lori. Standing are Harlan’s brother Caleb and his father Aaron.
Dave Faries

Noah Harlan can now truly say he gives a hoot about tennis. On Thursday, the Mexico High School senior committed to play for the William Woods University Owls next season.

Harlan signed the official letter of intent in front of his current teammates, school officials and family members during a pandemic appropriate ceremony at the MHS Sports Complex. He was joined by WWU head tennis coach Chance Joost.

Playing for coach Tony Senor’s Bulldogs, Harlan was a court standout, earning three varsity letters, a third in the 2019 conference doubles tournament and individual top six finishes his junior and senior seasons. But he doesn’t expect such accolades to hold up on the college level.
“It’s going to be a lot more work,” Harlan said. “The competition level is going to be a lot different.”

In addition to his success with the racket, Harlan is captain of Mexico’s Academic Team. He was impressed by the atmosphere at William Woods, as well as his new coach.

The respect is mutual.

“He’s got a lot of potential and wants to work hard,” Joost said of Harlan. “That’s the kind of guy you’re looking for.”

WWU is a prominent NAIA tennis program located in Fulton. This season’s team featured three All-Americans and five regional awards, as well eight scholar-athletes. The men’s teams earned All-Academic honors. On the court, they racked up a 40-22 record in singles matches, matched by a 20-7 mark in doubles.
One of the first times Harlan took to the court as a child, he watched as one of his friends took a shot to the face. The tennis ball left the friend with a bloody nose. But the incident did not faze Harlan.

“You have to keep trying, and it just takes practice,” he said.

Harlan plans to major in exercise science at WWU with an emphasis on athletic training.


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