Freshmen Serve Up A New Season


Salcedo serves the ball in a doubles match against Plainfield South. Photo by Adrian Songco

Sophia Woods, Sports Editor

Girls’ varsity tennis begins the season with a 7-1 record with the assistance of talented freshmen Jessica Kovalick, Santoshi Yadagiri and Thea Salcedo who are playing varsity starting spots.

Previous teams have been senior dominated, but this year the freshmen are stepping up.

“Having the freshmen leading with some of our seniors adds a different environment to our team,” varsity coach Raghav Saini said.

Yadagiri plays the first doubles spot with freshman Thea Salcedo while Kovalick is dominating the first singles spot.

“Both are very strong in singles and doubles,” Saini said.

Though freshmen, the girls took little time to adjust to their opportunities. 

“It’s exciting [being on varsity],” Kovalick said. “It’s my first year in a new high school, so it’s good to try new things.”

Teammate Yadagiri agrees. “My matches have been going really good. I am undefeated this season.”

Salcedo is having 

a solid start as well, as she finds what works best for her.

“I just have to be confident in myself and work with my partner,” Salcedo said. 

Kovalick and Yadagiri are both stand out players on the team with outside experience such as private lessons and tournaments. 

“They both play travel tennis,” Saini said. “There is a UTR (universal tennis ranking), and 

they both are ranked very high. The mix of high school tennis and previous training is really where we see their confidence and skill come out.” 

Saini predicts that the girls will sweep the district and even state. 

“I think an upset would have to happen for them not to make it to state, ” Saini said.