The Mankato East tennis team sports a young squad highlighted by the play from freshman Mark Williams.

KEYC News 12 Sports Rob Clark has more on why Williams is our KEYC News 12 Prep Athlete of the Week brought to you by Scheels.

"He's always had a talent for it, the skills for it. Now he's getting some size and he's able to hang with the bigger boys now," said Paul Williams, Mankato East head coach.

Freshman Mark Williams is off to a fast start this season.

Entering this week, the Cougar's number one singles player only had one loss which came against the tenth rated athlete in the state.

"Playing someone like that and winning some games and points makes me realize that I can compete at that level. Someday I can get there, it makes me work harder, and gives me more confidence that I can hang in," said Mark Williams, prep athlete of the week. 

"I think that he can learn from playing a player of that caliber, I'm hoping that Mark will have a similar game to that player of Chaska in a couple of years when he's a senior. That senior from Chaska is just a little too tough for Mark right now," said Paul Williams.

Williams features a stronger serve this season, and is developing into a complete player who keeps his cool no matter what the score is.

"I think Mark does seems reserved, but on the inside I can see there is a fire burning. He wants to win as much as anybody out there, but maybe controls his emotions better than some, doesn't get too worked up when the chips are down, and he just keeps fighting until the end, and I love that attitude he has," said Paul Williams. 

Williams ability to take a match over is why he's our KEYC News 12 Prep Athlete of the Week, brought to you by Scheels.

--KEYC News 12