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Lady Warrior Tennis Triumphs and Trials, 2017

WH Girls Tennis Letting Their Racquets Do The Talking After Impressive Victories

Caitlin Yang, Staff Writer

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The Watchung Hills Girls Tennis Team began the 2017 season with high hopes: an impressive collection of varsity starters – Tristen Chau, Brenda Peng, Elyssa Van Houtte, Sophie Weaver, Caitlin Yang, Emiline Fahmy and Ruchi Biswas – all began training for a season that would prove to be extremely successful in both the scorebooks and the losing teams’ courts.

This group of experienced returning varsity players was joined by freshman four-star tennis recruit Sydney Sharma. Experienced JV players Caitlyn Park, Katie Morris, and Linda Ye also joined the varsity team as alternates.

pictured (left to right) are varsity players Sydney Sharma, Brenda Peng, and Ruchi Biswas

The Head coach for Watchung Hills was Scott Keele in his first season. In recent history, the girls tennis team reached the semi-finals of the 2015 Group 4 Sectional championships. It was and continues to be Coach Keele’s goal to mirror the 2015 path into the 2017 season, an accomplishment that’s going to bring some difficulty.

And when the team opened the season with an important win over the defending Group 4 champions Ridge team to go 3-0, there was a feeling that this indeed could be a special season.  Tri-captain Tristen Chau exclaimed, “I am excited about beating the number 1 team from last year!”

The Somerset County Tournament was one of the early highlights of the season with the girls team getting all five flights into the tournament finals. The team won the county championships with individual champions Brenda Peng and Sydney Sharma for second singles and first singles respectively.

After her impressive first singles victory on 9/24/17, Sydney Sharma was quoted in NJ.com stating, “I’m actually more happy that my team won.” In speaking about his Somerset County championship team, Coach Keele was quoted, “they’re all making sacrifices and support each other…the girls are super.”

freshman varsity player Sydney Sharma

The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association singles/doubles tournament opened on October 7, 2017. Another sign of the strength of this Watchung Hills team was how far their entries got into the tournament. Sydney Sharma was the number 3 seed and reached the tournament semifinal. Despite being unseeded, Brenda Peng reached the round of 16. The team’s first doubles duo of Sophie Weaver and Caitlin Yang also reached the round of 16.

 

After this impressive effort in the NJSIAA tournament, Sophie Weaver was still focused on the work still before them: “These next few matches are what we have worked for the whole season.”

The 2017 girls tennis season is not yet over. It is State Sectional Team Tournament time. The members of the Watchung Hills team are focused on making sure that the team, currently 14-2 on the season, keeps up the great work and meets the high expectations set for them.

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Lady Warrior Tennis Triumphs and Trials, 2017