Girls’ tennis team serves into CIFs

For the ninety-fourth year in a row, the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) continues to host their annual sports competitions, which includes the girls’ tennis section. Both individuals and teams from NPHS will be competing against top athletes from other schools and organizations in this year’s CIF. In order to perform to the best of their ability, the girl’s tennis team has been preparing mentally and physically to overcome any obstacle the competition may bring.

Despite merely qualifying for the competition itself being a rigorous process, the team managed to beat the competition. Grace Pei, junior on the varsity team, along with the rest of the team had to compete against numerous schools in order to secure a spot in the CIF. “To be in this competition, they take the top three schools in each league. Out of our league, we ranked in the top three, so we were able to qualify,” Pei said.

Along with usual exercises for tennis, NPHS Coach Bill Mulligan offers additional optional practices in order to prepare for the competition. “So we had regular practice sessions where we practiced singles to get ready for our playoff match and for the rest of the girls, they practice their doubles to get ready for the playoffs match,” Mulligan said.

The qualifying process was extremely close, explained Ava Zasloff, senior and singles player for the varsity team. “This year it came down to a very close match between us and Oaks Christian because we had lost by 5 games the first time we played them, so we had to win when we played again in order to make playoffs,” Zasloff said.

However, some players, such as Zasloff, are competing for their first time in the CIF due to COVID cancellations last year. “This is my first time playing in CIF despite our team going to [the] playoffs last year,” Zasloff said. In addition to physical exercises, the team also practices mentally. “We have prepared by practicing daily and mentally preparing for a difficult match against our opponent[s],” Zasloff said.

Zasloff is eager to finish her senior year at NPHS alongside other seniors at the CIF. “I am excited to end my senior year and our tennis season on a high note, playing in playoffs surrounded by my friends and classmates,” Zasloff said. In addition to physical exercises, the team also practices mentally. “We have prepared by practicing daily and mentally preparing for a difficult match against our opponent[s],” Zasloff said.

With the commitments surrounding tennis sometimes causing exhaustion, players are still eager to compete. “It was exhausting and having to make up schoolwork sucks, but spending time with everyone on the team made it a fun adventure,” Hu said.
Players who still have a year left of school are just as excited to go through whatever obstacle or challenge the competition may bring with the accompaniment of their teammates. “Regarding CIF, I am excited to be able to compete against other schools and also play in another match with our seniors this year. Having more opportunities to bond with our team is always lots of fun,” Pei said.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.