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Sea Kings' new coach announced

March 11, 2004

Bryce Alderton

Brian Ricker, who guided the Laguna Beach High girls tennis team to

the CIF Southern Section Division I semifinals last year, will take

the reins at Pacific Coast League rival Corona del Mar beginning next

fall.

Ricker, 42, fills the position vacated by Scott Feichter, who

resigned after one season. The Sea Kings lost to Peninsula, 11-7, in

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the CIF Division I finals last fall.

"I consider [CdM] one of the top programs in the country with

never-ending great players and a great history. [The Sea Kings']

depth is really outstanding," Ricker said.

CdM has won eight CIF titles, including back-to-back Division IV

crowns in 2000 and 2001.

"Those girls are all well-mannered," Ricker said. "The things

important to me are winning with class and losing with dignity. I

want to see the girls smiling, playing as a team and having a good

time. If we play with class, practice hard and have a good time,

knowing we competed hard, it will be a great season.

"I want to develop a team doubles strategy where all players are

on the same page and everyone knows what everyone else is doing."

Ricker applied for the CdM position six weeks ago and said there

are no hard feelings between him and Laguna Beach. A new job allowed

him greater flexibility to spend time needed coaching a high school

team. He even helped the administration hire a new coach, Greg Weiss,

a longtime teaching pro.

Ricker, a Laguna Beach resident, played No. 2 singles at El Toro

through his junior year, before moving with his family to Cherry

Hill, N.J., where he was the top singles player on the 1979 Cherry

Hill East team that won the state championship. He then went

undefeated in singles and doubles (44-0) in two seasons at Nassau

Community College in Long Island, N.Y.

Ricker teaches players ages 6 to 17 in a junior development league

in Laguna Beach for 20 hours a week.

Laguna's girls team went 39-7 in Ricker's two years at the helm --

he also guided the boys team for four years.

CdM and Laguna Beach have a storied history facing one another and

Ricker is still glad to be a part of the rivalry.

"We've all gotten along great and it's been a friendly,

competitive situation," he said. "I hope we have an advantage since I

know [the Breakers] so well."

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