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Sports

Veteran Revere girls tennis team in new division

8/15/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Sean Patrick

BATH — Head coach Kathy Shisler described this year’s Revere High School girls tennis team as “a team of veterans.”

“There are eight returning letterwomen, and three of those players were awarded first or second all-Suburban team in 2012,” she said.

Sophomore Hailey Hendrickson is returning to first singles this season, Shisler stated, while second and third singles will be played in some order by senior Nikki Henry and junior Claire Lifke.

“Seniors Anna Ling, Annie Taylor, Megan Mortimer and Gina Bucci will round out the doubles, with backup by seniors Grace Berry and Kathryn Fenton and junior Perrine Furet,” the coach said.

According to Shisler, this year’s seniors form a strong core for the team.

“They’ve all been playing on the Revere team since freshman or sophomore year and have continued to improve each year with sharper skills and confidence,” she said. “Seniors Nikki Henry and Anna Ling, three-time letterwomen and team captains, will set the tone for their team members both on and off the court. These Lady Minutemen are positive and committed team players for the entire team of 20 girls for both the varsity and junior varsity team. Seniors Annie Taylor, Megan Mortimer, Grace Berry and Gina Bucci all played on last year’s varsity in singles and doubles, and their versatility and experience will be a plus.”

In addition, Shisler said, Hendrickson and Lifke will play key roles for this year’s squad.

“Hailey Hendrickson has continued to improve her game and will have the most competition at first singles against opponents from Cloverleaf, Green and Copley. Last year, she placed third in the Suburban League Tournament held in Medina,” the coach stated. “Claire Lifke has taken her game to a new level and continues to improve each season. Her strengths include more experience with deep consistent ground strokes, improved serve and competitive match play.”

Last year, Revere ended the season with an 8-7 overall record, including a 5-2 mark in the Suburban League. The team finished in fourth place in both league play and the Suburban League tournament. Shisler said this year’s team is looking to improve on both its overall record and its total of league wins.

“We are setting our goal to place first in the league and do well in the league tournament to be held on Sept. 21 at the Medina High School courts,” she said. “The team will be stepping up their games with improvement in skills and consistency. Many of the players continued working on their games throughout the year in the offseason, and a few competed in tournament play. This year’s team strengths will be experience, confidence, competitiveness, improved skills and enjoyment of the game. The girls will continue to work on mental toughness and communication with partners when practicing and competing.”

One difference for the team this season, Shisler noted, will be a change in divisions.

“Our team has been moved to Division II tennis, which means our sectional tournament will be against smaller schools, and it could be advantageous for our postseason play,” she said. “We had been a Division I school for the past four years.”

Shisler will be assisted this season by junior varsity and assistant coach Paul Fisher, volunteer assistant Whit Andrew and parent coordinator Pam Lifke.

“This will be my 25th year as coach, and I still enjoy working with the girls, parents, coaches and our school in guiding our team towards success and a positive high school experience with a rewarding team of young women,” Shisler said.

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