Womens Varsity Tennis
Game Summaries & Headlines.
- Game Date
- May 26, 2021
- COWBOYS: 9
PARKLAND HIGH SCHOOL: 0
May 26, 2021
Cowgirls over the much-improved Lady Mustangs of Parkland 9-0 in conference tennis action
Thanks to Szitas and Manley for covering my class today. These two gents helped the Cowgirls get out of the parking lot at a good time to allow for pre-match hitting, essentially, a good warm up before some of the new faces took to the court for the first time.
Sitting the top four and playing up in singles and doubles, the Cowgirls faced off tonight against what turned out to be a much improved and fully fielded team from Parkland. Coach wasn’t worried, just filling in the pieces of select Cowgirls to best equip them into a well-rounded tennis player before the conference tourney.
The lineup for today:
1 – Maggi Mugi
2 – Shaini Lal
3 – Lauren Harris
4 – Avery McCaskill
5 – Kate Cherry
6 – Tamara Davis
Avery was one of the first off the courts tonight. Her match was a pleasant time of courteous play (Reader – understand the Lady Mustangs are super kind and gracious) allowing for the further development of a new player from Parkland. Yes, Avery had little trouble dictating the points to a count of 2-5 on each point exchange, but to Avery’s credit, she held off the Mustang during inspired points brought forth out of the blue. I do not recollect Avery double faulting during the match and much like her serving, Avery held a perfect match never dropping a game to her opponent. 6-0, 6-0. This was Avery’s first varsity singles match of the season.
Lauren. If you know anything about Lauren’s game…it is big. Big serves, big forehands, and even a wicked flat, low, cross court with a good angle backhand. Lauren’s opponent did not hit that hard. So to bring the reader along, it is difficult to hit hard against a softer shot. This is no affront to the Lady Mustang, rather, an observation of the stage of play Lauren’s opponent was living. Hitting hard against hard is easy. Hitting hard against hard and dictate the point much more difficult. Hitting hard against puff shots is simply on a different level. With full knowledge of coach, Lauren would have to adjust her game, not to play down, rather, to play around a different type of opponent. And she did very well. Though it took a few games, Lauren’s legs began to move in preparation of the shorter shots. So too her forehand and backhand, but not to whip it…whip it good, rather, to control the power. Lauren walked off the single’s court with a win beneath her belt and a bit more understanding of what controlling her power means. 6-1, 6-0.
Kate joins the top six the first time this season. Chipper and willing she took to the courts. Kate began like many other young ladies do…through the first several points she felt out her opponent. Though she began playing her opponent’s style of play early on, after a chat with Coach she changed to a more direct style of play, lowering the height of the ball during rallies, and simply outplaying her opponent by keeping the ball in play. Consistency is a beautiful thing. 6-1, 6-0.
Shaini play was a big longer than her other team members but still resulted in the same conclusion. Court #2 Mustang had been hitting during these few weeks greatly increasing her ability to rally. Though still hitting most of her shots in front of her person and directed higher, the Mustang was able to extend points past 5-7 shots consistently. Again, with the thought of consistency. In tennis, all other aspects equal…heck, even if skewed, consistency is often the precursor to a victory. This court’s story was no different. Shaini delivered deep enough serves and though her play aided the Mustang’s ability to return her shots, Shaini edged her opponent by outlasting her. When feasible, Shaini hit deep, brought the Mustang left, then right, but she was no match with Shaini’s ability to simply keep it in. 6-1, 6-0 victory for the Cowgirls.
Tamara took court 6 as a first time Varsity player…not just this year, but the first time forever. Playing a very inexperienced Mustang, Tamara still had to hold her own serve and keep the ball in play. Similar to Kate’s opening forays in rallying, Tamara too hit rather high with her shots matching the playing style of her opponent. Maybe it was the gummy fruit snacks before the match or the promise of a CapriSun afterward, Tamara soon settled her serve and had a lovely time with the shot exchanges of her opponent. I cannot say there was much forcing one’s game on the other player, rather, it was a game of attrition. Many games went to 30 all and some went to deuce on both sides as both ladies did their best keeping the ball in play. Tamara had the advantage. Her shots were a bit longer and her court coverage was more than enough to slowly turn the match into her favor and keep it til the end. Tamara walks off the court with her first varsity win, 6-2, 6-1.
The final singles match to exit belongs to Maggi on court 1. As witnessed by Lauren’s adjustment in play, so too did Maggi need to adjust her play. After taking on the world with victories at Mt Tabor (epic) and Northwest against bigger hitters, she now faced off against a competent pusher. Pusher and a reflector, but not quite a mirror player. Never having seen this type of player from across the court, Maggi struggled at first. Unable to hit out on the ball as much as in previous matches, it took the better part of the first 4/5 games to secure her footing. With frequent breaks needed from her opponent due to the heat, the Mustang was able to keep her energy up through the match, but Maggi saw the path to victory. No, it was not splashy nor exciting. Truth be told, it was a bit of a grind on Court 1 absent the epic rallies and speed of just one match ago. Maggi would not relent - slowly breaking down the Mustang’s game breaking twice in the first and able to secure the additional break in the second to secure the victory. No, it was not at soul satisfying as other matches have proven, but it was part of developing the entire player. Mental growth requires a different approach on the court. Today was yet another step in that journey for Maggi. 6-3, 6-4.
The cowgirls up 6-0 and having won the match, they gear up for dubs.
Maggie and Shaini partnered @#1 dubs and defended their court well. Down a break due to simple mistakes in play, the Cowgirls rallied, held, then broke their opponents to go up 4-3. Down the line, lifting over, and deft cross court positioning of the ball lifted the Cowgirls further, stopping the Mustangs with only one more additional game earned, Cowgirls win 8-4.
On the strength of Lauren’s net play and Avery’s serving to parley into a 1-2 punch to finish out the points, Court 2 Cowgirls did little wrong while overpowering the Mustangs taking the victory 8-0.
Now let’s talk about the last Cowgirls to take the court. In a night of firsts, both Rachael Dee and Betsy Chen, first yr members on the tennis team, partnered in their first varsity match ever and played wonderfully. Focused not so much on their opponent’s game rather what they knew their game to be…serving, good returns, not overpowering play, Court 3 Cowgirls left little on the table. With all four ladies in their first year of play, the Cowgirls were the stronger team. Only allowing the Mustangs to hold their own serve once, both Rachel and Betsy kept the ball in play and hit well to the open court. Given the Mustangs played from the baseline, the Cowgirls faced no real pressure and were able to play their burgeoning game. 8-1 as these two walked off the courts given the Cowgirls a 9-0 victory overall.
Cowgirls improve to 7-3 and 4-1 on the season.
Southeast (future playmate in the PT 4a next season) cancelled for Thursday so the Cowgirls will wait until next Tuesday before playing again as they travel to Western for out final Conference date.
Only three more matches left. Let’s Go!
Maggie Mugi (SW) over Jennifer Galacia-Torres (P) 6-3, 6-4
Shaini Lal (SW) over Mariam Raja
(P) 6-1, 6-0
Lauren Harris (SW) over Lashley French
(P) 6-1, 6-0
Avery McCaskill (SW) over Ifeoluwatobi Onasanya
(P) 6-0, 6-0
Kate Cherry (SW) over Diana Mareno
(P) 6-1, 6-0
Tamara Davis (SW) over Skye Osbourne
(P) 6-2, 6-1
Cowgirls led 6-0 after singles
Cowgirls win over a much-improved Parkland team 9-0
Kudos to Coach Johnson and her ladies on a well-played match.