Richland County High School graduate Tanner Hendrickson has made a decision on where he will continue his tennis career.  The former Olney Tiger Tennis standout has decided to continue his career at Lewis and Clark Community College. “I wasn’t 100% sure I wanted to continue, but once I got to the state tournament I knew this was something I wanted to pursue,” Tanner Hendrickson said about his decision to pursue tennis at the collegiate level. “Lewis and Clark just kind of happened, and we are here today.” The Tiger made the decision to become a Trailblazer after finishing his career at Olney with a 77.5% winning percentage. Hendrickson evolved as a tennis player during his tenure as a Tiger.  It was a learning process that has led the RCHS graduate to his next step. “His freshman year he played a lot of doubles. He wasn’t able to get a lot of singles in because of the talent we had,” Olney head coach Drew Muston said. “He worked a lot to get better throughout the years and he progressed every single year.” Tanner knew he had to improve during his time on the courts if he was going to have the chances to extend his career. “My freshman year I came in and just thought I would hit this ball as hard as I can, just see if I can overpower kids,” Hendrickson said. “I learned quickly that is not the case.” Tanner Hendrickson had to work to earn his place in the very successful Olney Tiger Tennis program. “We have had great kids come through here,” Musotn said. “A lot of the kids work hard and really work together.” The success of the Tiger program over the four years Hendrickson was a member of the team has a lot to do with the way Tanner evolved over the year. “I would take 20 kids like Tanner,” Olney’s Muston said about the impact Tanner has had on the program. “A great kid. You never have to worry about trouble, you never have to worry about grades. Always going to show up and give 110% every day and does what he is told.” Hendrickson picked up a career record of 34-4 in singles matches and 52-21 in doubles over his four year career. That breaks down into winning 89% of his singles matches and 71% of his doubles matches. Although experiencing success, Hendrickson remarked that he has more work to do when he experienced the level of play at the state tournament. “I thought I was really good, then I saw kids play from Chicago and thought, whew, I have a lot of work to do,” Hendrickson said. That is the chance that he will have during his next step at Lewis and Clark Community College. “Hopefully it helps me get to the next step and the next level. I am looking forward to meeting new teammates and this new coach and traveling to different cities.” That is where Jesse Macias, the head coach at Lewis and Clark, stepped in for Tanner Hendrickson. “I like that he is a good kid,” Macias said about what Tanner brings to the next level.  “When it comes to college, all the kids can play.  We want the academics and can play, and make good decisions. I think Tanner is a kid like that.” Hendrickson brings a special skill set to Lewis and Clark, one that will be greatly missed by Olney Tiger head coach Drew Muston. “His leadership and effort he puts into it and the work he does. Just being that guy to lead the team to do the right thing all the time,” Muston said of Hendrickson.  “Just a great team player.  A great leader.  What he is about to do is all the effort he has put in for the four years, and even before that.” The graduate of Richland County High School will bring a decorated resume into the Lewis and Clark Community College. Hendrickson won the Flora Doubles Tournament all four years of his career, claimed first team All-LIC his senior season, second team All-LIC in his sophomore year, honorable mention All-LIC as a junior, and palced secont in doubles in the sectionals, qualifying for state his senior year. The decorated Tiger also was a three time conference champion and four time Flora Doubles Tournament champion, and a 2018 Sectional Champion as a team. The 50-5 record, 91% win percentage, over his four years will be the leaping off point for the next stage of his career. “I am just speechless that it is coming to an end,” Hendrickson said of his career at Olney closing.  “I want my legacy to be a hard worker, a great teammate, and those are probably the two most important things if you win or not.” Lewis and Clark head coach, Jesse Macias, knows just that. “Lewis and Clark is a good school and a great opportunity for kids to come there and do things the right way,” Macias said. “I think we have that in Tanner.” Lewis and Clark is just one of two junior colleges in the Great Rivers Athletic Conference that has tennis, and that gives the school a shot to play a high level of competition. “We play all four year schools. We play a lot of schools out of St. Louis and other schools in Illinois,” Lewis and Clark Jesse Macias said. “You see the top players everywhere. We play a really competitive schedule. It is fun, but it is challenging because you have one and two year players playing three and four year players. We love it. We have a chance to go to nationals every year.” Hendrickson will be joining players from Missouri, O’Fallon, and Triad who will be trying to make a statement at Lewis and Clark. “Lewis and Clark is a team that has been successful for a long time,” Macias said about taking over the program, and overcoming a probation this past year. “We needed to make some changes and get on the right track. I think we have done that.” Hendrickson has already put a stamp on a program with his time as a  Tiger and Drew Muston will definitely have a void to fill. “I am going to miss him. A great kid, leader of the team. A great family, great parents. They had a lot to do with help fundraise and getting things together to help me out,” Muston said about the great person and tremendous member of the team Tanner has been. “It is a whole package deal and I am going to miss him.” Hendrickson was very appreciative of everyone who has helped him get to this career defining moment. “Thanks to my family. Thanks to my coach, Drew Muston and our assistant coaches Dick Muston and Chris Muston,” said the thankful Hendrickson. “A big thanks to the fans and my teammates who pushed me to the next level.”