The girls also started out strong. Lily Kate was quick to get on the board with a couple of games. Her match ended up being the longest of the afternoon, with many long rallies. If she was tired, she didn’t show it. She kept making one beautiful shot after another. Once again, the score (3-8) didn’t do justice to how well Lily Kate played for the Eagles. At the same time, on the next court, the eighth-grade duo of Juliette and Elise was off to a great start of their own. They won three of the first six or seven games and seemed to be having the match of their lives. Even though the end result of their match was not what they had hoped for, it was a great memory to carry through the off season.
Speaking of best performances of the season, Sydney certainly had hers today. Accurate serves in windy conditions and smooth forehand shots helped her put three games in the win column early on in the match. She had many close games that just barely slipped away, but she made her teammates and Mt. Bethel fans proud.
Eliza, also known as the Energizer Bunny, showed no fear as she went up against a very tall and tough opponent. She smiled through the match and it was evident to all watching that she was soaking up the experience of playing singles, filing away important lessons for the many seasons that lie ahead.
Last, but certainly far, far from least, were the true heroes of the 2020 season, Lily and Isabella. Six weeks ago, neither had ever picked up a tennis racket. But nervous or not, they knew that we wouldn’t have a full girls team without them. So, they showed up. They came to every practice, even got some lessons on their own. They picked up the game quickly. They consistently got their serves in, made some great point-winning shots, and even won a few games along the way. They played with honor and with grace. They complimented opponents on their great play and they held their heads high. They showed up, and they succeeded in having a great season, building confidence in themselves and their ability to take on new challenges.