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Girls’ tennis rolls to 6-1 record

Confidence grows with win over Kennedy

Sam Birnberg

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Sophomore Kenna Jacobson hits a crosscourt groundstroke. Jacobson and her doubles partner Ella Thomas won their match 6-1 6-0.

The girls’ tennis team watched eagerly from the side as the final exhibition match finished with a victory. Park won all individual matches against Jefferson Kennedy, improving to a 6-1 record on the year.

Senior captain Hanna Schechter said she felt the match displayed the team’s improvement since the beginning of the season.

“I think that overall the team keeps getting better and we keep improving, which was helping us in our match today,” Schechter said.

Head coach David Breitenbucher said he believes having a winning mindset has lead to the team’s recent success.

“I told the girls this was going to be a match that we were going to win, and so they should go out and work on things they need to improve on, instead of just playing against the opponent to win,” Breitenbucher said.

Sophomore Ella Thomas said the team played well in the 7-0 sweep. She attributes her own 6-0, 6-1 win to the positivity and teamwork she shared with her doubles partner.

“I think we had a lot of good shots and worked together as a team,” Thomas said.

Thomas’ doubles partner, Sophomore Kenna Jacobson, said consistency has become a point of emphasis for the team in practice.

“Our consistency has been off in some of the past matches, but for this one it was good.” Jacobson said.

Schechter said hard work and dedication in practice has been a crucial factor in the team’s winning record halfway through the season.

“So far in practice, we have been playing a lot of matches, getting into the mindset. We do a lot of fitness, which is helping us on the court. Staying in the points, keeping them going,” Scechter said. “We are also focusing on our weaknesses and how we can improve them.”

Breitenbucher said that although the team has performed admirably this far into the season, they still have areas to improve in heading into the tougher half of their schedule.

“Doubles have to be more aggressive getting to the net, I mean that is everybody. I think that doubles have to get to the net more, and I think that our singles players have to keep the ball deep more, so everybody has things to work on,” Breitenbucher said.

Schechter echoed the same critiques on the team’s performance and hopes they can play more aggressively moving forward in the season.

“As a team, I think overall we are pretty consistent, but we are more defensive. I think that if we can be more offensive, we can win more points,” Schechter said.

Breitenbucher said the team will face tough challenges ahead of them against Benilde-St. Margaret’s and Hopkins. Despite the difficult matches, he said he has confidence in the team and high hopes heading into Sections in October.

“I feel like we are competitive and I feel like if we can continue getting better in the next three weeks, I feel like we can beat anyone in our conference,” Breitenbucher said.

Park’s next match against Chanhassen takes place at 4:15 p.m. on Sept. 12 at Chanhassen High School.

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Girls’ tennis rolls to 6-1 record