Boys tennis team in a state of confusion over coach’s departure

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Photo courtesy of Nick Walker

Kate Kotlyar staff writer

The boys tennis team was satisfied. According to former coach Eric Busi, the team was “kicking and screaming” while preparing to win the league. Then, a shroud of speculation and uncertainty hit them. 

Both COVID-19 and the absence of a coach for the upcoming season contributed to their uncertainty. Busi was the team’s coach for three years, until last year when he was accepted to the University of St. Augustine, a medical school in Miami. The team has been feeling an array of emotions due to confusion. 

“There are so many unknowns right now that I can’t help but feel helpless. We’ll do what we can together, but a lot of the factors are simply out of our reach,” senior Nick Walker, the varsity team captain, said. 

Over his three year coaching career, Busi established structure within the tennis team. 

“[The] structure that was established my first three years was perfect; I was totally satisfied with it. So, whatever role I can play in maintaining that, I will follow,” Walker said. “[But,] as of right now,  the team lacks structure. There’s just a lot of unknowingness, and that’s difficult as someone who has the position of a leader on the team because nobody really knows.”

The team knew about Busi’s application to med school for over a year. It was even a running joke among them. 

“I had been telling them each year that I’m applying to med school and I’ll keep them updated with my interviews for when I had to travel. Year after year I didn’t get in and they kept joking, ‘Coach Busi, you’ll be back with us next year.’ Unfortunately, this year I won’t be with them because I’m in Miami. [But] they were very supportive,” Busi said. 

Despite the team’s supportive attitude, they have still been left “pretty distraught,” according to Walker.

“[The team was] pretty bummed out, they liked Busi a lot. It was a fun team when he was there. They’re pretty sad about it,” team member junior Doran Dubner said.

Even though Busi is currently in Miami working for a doctorate in physical therapy, coaching was always a goal for him, not a pitstop between high school and med school. 

“It was a dream of mine later down in my life to be a head coach. I always envisioned I would be a coach much later, like when I have kids to coach. But the fact that I was able to do that at such a young age was already a bucket list [item] that I’ll be able to cross off,” Busi said. “It was truly the best experience I’ve ever had, to give back to my former alma mater and really be in the program that raised me.”

Busi’s coaching days are not yet finished, despite the fact that he already coached at Beverly. 

“I think the door is still open for me. I think I still want to finish because I feel like I have unfinished business to bring a CIF championship back to Beverly High, so I feel like it leaves the door open,” Busi said. “Once I get through my own schooling, and once I’m back in Los Angeles for good…I’d like to think that I’ll be back there sooner or later to finish my job.”

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