By Ashley Cohen ‘22
A little over one month into the fall season, the girls’ varsity tennis team has played incredibly in its first interscholastic tennis competition since fall of 2019. On Friday, September 24, the team worked its way to a 5-0 win against West Windsor-Plainsboro High School North. Big Red Sports Network Reporter Ashley Cohen caught up with Tri-Captain Sabrina Yeung ’22 to discuss the results.
Ashley Cohen: What went well at the match on Friday?
Sabrina Yeung: I and the other captains are really proud of the team for pulling through the match on Friday. We played a strong team–West Windsor Plainsboro North–and the doubles matches were especially tight. I noticed that in comparison to our first match, the energy between the doubles teams definitely improved and I think that that played a huge factor in every team's resilience and closing out of their respective matches. Additionally, I saw that more of the girls playing doubles were attempting to take the volley, and although it wasn't always successful, I am really proud of the girls for practicing what we went over in the days leading up to the match.
AC: What will you work on moving forward?
SY: As a team, we are always working on bringing more energy to the court, either during practice or to a match. Cheering each other on from the sidelines or across several courts is definitely key in lifting spirits especially if a girl or doubles team is losing in the set. We have also been working on not lagging back too much both in singles and doubles and hitting the ball at the peak of the bounce rather than letting the ball drop below the optimal contact point. More specifically for doubles, we are working on recognizing the correct ball to poach on as well as what the best target is to put ourselves in an aggressive position to win the point.
AC: How has the team been incorporating new members this year given COVID-related rearrangements?
SY: During preseason, which the majority of the current members of the varsity team attended, we did team bonding activities like a scavenger hunt and a team trip to Gingered Peach after our very early morning practice, as well as team dinner to just get to know one another better. The captains and I also brought the team to Purple Cow after one of the hardest practices of the season so far to cool down and go over team expectations. The majority of the girls on the team this year actually practiced with the varsity team during fall last year, so we are building on the relationships we created then and strengthening those. We are always working hard in practice and new to practice this year is some of the fitness we've been doing at the end of practice to work on our endurance as well as strength, to prepare for performance in practice and match days.
AC: What are you looking forward to for the rest of the season?
SY: I am really looking forward to improving more as a team and playing more matches. Especially because we didn't have a season last year, the team really values all the matches that we are scheduled to play this season. Each day in practice, we work on something with intention, whether it be movement at the net or putting the ball away at the net. I have been really proud of how the team has improved in the way they show up to each practice just within the span of three weeks–with more energy and more willingness to work hard and scramble for balls. I am excited to build on what we do in practice and things we learn from our past matches. It's also so amazing to be able to be a captain with three other seniors who have been on the team with me for the past three years and who I am good friends with, and I am really looking forward to continuing working with them to bring home another (hopefully) undefeated season.
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