Season preview: Girls’ tennis refocuses after loss of seniors

Claire Krugler and Amy Leung

Senior Madeline Lee goes in for a forehand. Photo courtesy of Madeline Lee.

After dropping down to the El Camino League, the Palo Alto High School girls’ tennis team is looking to regroup and win a league title.

The loss of seven seniors last year greatly affected the team, according to senior captain Madeline Lee.

“Basically all of the seniors were our top half of the line, so we lost good players,” Lee said.

Junior Halle Biorn says the team is shifting its focus this season.

“Our goals are just to have a good season really, and to focus on getting better as a team and closer as a team,” Biorn said. “We gained a lot of new players, so I think [our goals are] more just team bonding and hopefully to win this league.”

Lee agrees, noting that this year will also be a development year for the team.

“I’m really excited for the new players to come in and see what tennis is about and hopefully play a lot and get better,” Lee said.

Although the girls are focused on developing and bonding as a team, coach Andy Harader believes focusing on the goal of winning the league is just as important.

“Our goal is simple – win the league,” Harader said. “We are capable of doing that if we can thwart the direction of going social. We need to develop more of a determined and competitive side – intensive practices with [fewer] distractions.”

According to Harader, in order to achieve the goal of winning the league, Lee and sophomore Avanika Narayan will lead the team along with a couple of strong freshmen.

Overall, the team has high hopes for the upcoming season in terms of enjoyment and success.

“I hope that our team is ready to compete and they’re excited and just go into it and play their hearts out,” Lee said. “That’s all you can ask.”

The girls’ tennis team will play against Woodside at 4 p.m. tomorrow at home.