Saints tennis player ace on and off court:If Seward’s got something to harp about, it’s Landon––with lots of strings attached.

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Landon Harp is a member of the Saints men’s tennis team, and he strings together not only tennis but also excellent grades as an academic achiever. His hard work in all areas are coming together to play a harmonious tune in Harp’s life. Harp started playing tennis his freshman year at Liberal High School. “Tennis came pretty natural to me,” Harp said. Harp plays both singles and doubles for the Saints tennis team at tournaments. When playing doubles, Harp’s partner is Aaron Schaffer. “I probably prefer singles, but I enjoy playing doubles with Aaron,” Harp said. “We tend to joke around.” Schaffer and Harp have been playing together since their senior year of high school. “I don’t really want to say he’s a smart, funny, athletic guy,” Schaffer said. “I mean, what are people going to think?” A book scholarship and staying in shape were Harp’s motivating factors in choosing to play tennis for Seward, but along the way he ran into another perk. “I enjoy hanging out with everybody,” Harp said. “It helped me make some new friends.” Harp has enjoyed all the foreign exchange students on the tennis team and their attempts to teach him different languages. “All the foreign people are hilarious,” Harp said. His biggest obstacle in tennis has been an injury he suffered three years ago. During a Ulysses tennis tournament his sophomore year of high school, Harp tore his ACL. “I tore my ACL playing tennis, but I also finished that tournament, and I ended up winning the tournament,” Harp said. Although a typical ACL recovery is six months, Harp was back on the court in five months. “I really enjoy the game, but I’m also really competitive,” Harp said. “It’s fun to win and I always try to give it my best.” Harp believes the 2009 fall tennis season went well, winning five matches and losing two. “This year has been a great year so far. I’ve learned a lot, and it’s been an awesome experience getting to know and compete with the team,” Harp said. “We’re pretty unique in the fact that we are so diverse, and it should be a great season. I can’t wait to see how far this team can go.” Harp is up for the challenge of the next season, but it’s normal for Harp to face challenges head-on. He was born with a small ear cannel, and as a result wears a hearing aid. “It’s never affected me,” Harp said. “I still participated in everything––sports, got good grades. I could have had surgery to make it better, but I chose not to. It makes me unique and I kind of embrace it.” Harp has even found a positive to his situation. “It actually makes my other senses better,” Harp said. At Seward, Harp has already racked up 48 credit hours and is majoring in pre-pharmacy, so it makes sense that his part-time job is as a pharmacy tech at Walgreens. Harp’s girlfriend of three years, Lorie Rine, believes pharmacy is a suiting career field for him. “He seems to enjoy it a lot, and he’s really good at chemistry,” Rine said. “He’s a people person. I think he’ll like it.” Outside of school, tennis and work, Harp enjoys playing basketball, texting on his Blackberry, playing ping-pong and driving around town in his 1970 Camaro. Harp considers his Camaro his most prized possession. “It’s got some sentimental value,” Harp said. “My dad and I work on it together.” After Seward, Harp plans to transfer to Texas Tech or Southwestern Oklahoma State University to finish his degree in pharmacy.Landon Tennis picture MC

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