Smashing it over the net


Christian De'Vine

Junior Lauren Legardy is reaching high to serve to her opponent. The Vikings beat Lincoln-Way West in Wednesday’s match.

Coming into this season, the H-F girls’ varsity tennis team has 14 players, just one less than the 2018-19 team, who had 15 players. They have several heavy hitters on their roster, even after losing some graduating seniors.

There were six girls on this year’s squad that went to Sectionals last year, and they want to end up in Sectionals again this season and even end up going to State.

Head Coach Brendan Pontow believes they have a lot of potential to go to state this year with the new bright players that they brought in.

“I think we do have a bright future for this season. We got a lot of young, good players, and we are looking forward to competing for the conference championship, and hopefully qualifying our whole team for state,” Pontow said.

The team’s returning players from last season, such as junior Lauren Legardy, are ready to come out and improve on the things they achieved last year, and she has a chip on her shoulder. Starting her third season on varsity, Legardy is trying to do more this year than she did last year.

“I got first in the conference in number two singles, second in sectionals for our team to actually win sectionals (last year), I got to state third round then lost…. As the season progressed, I hurt myself so I wasn’t to the top of my ability,” Legardy said.

The team has had several games already played including matches against Lincoln-Way Central, and even having their own quad. The squad has achieved several wins in singles and doubles matches, even though some haven’t been as lucky as others.

The girls have some new talent that are ready to prove themselves. Sophomores Jaya Russel and Madisun Taylor get the chance to make a big statement with them being the only two sophomores on Varsity.

This is Russel’s first year on Varsity, so she has to prove that this was the right choice to add her. Freshman Amina Kendrick also has something to prove being the only freshman on the roster.
Senior Laila London wishes to make a solid impact for this team in her final year here. London says she wishes to make it to Sectionals and State.

“I want to be remembered as a really good player who helped the team go to Sectionals and beyond. This is my last year so I want to make the best of it and I’m pretty sure all of the other seniors can say the exact same,” London said. “I want my story to be heard even after I leave the school. I think I speak for all of the seniors when I say that we want to be the best we possibly can be this season.”
Along with London, the team will be losing seniors Elizabeth Lipscomb, Maya Nash, Carolyn Page and Grace Keigher.

The Varsity team has a match coming up next Thursday against Sandburg on September 26, and a match against Stagg on October 3, which is also Senior Night.