Parkland girls tennis caps 15-2 regular season
Consistent and excellent are two words that could describe the recently concluded 2018 Parkland girls tennis regular season.
Coach Michael Hingston’s squad registered a 15-2 record, finishing its season with a convincing 7-0 win over Emmaus on Sept. 29. The Lady Trojans only two losses came to Freedom and Nazareth. The longtime coach has been pleased watching his team’s maturation.
“It’s been fun to watch them play,” Hingston says.
The Lady Trojans number one singles player, senior Murong Yao, has been superlative throughout the campaign.
“She’s a superb tennis player who rises to the occasion,” Hingston said. “She’s also a tremendous role model for the rest of the team.”
In the season’s final regular season match, Yao methodically defeated Emmaus’ Shannon Stewart 6-1,6-0.
Number two singles player, junior Joanna Wu, is described by her coach as “a fierce competitor who really competes out there.” That drive to succeed overwhelmed the vast majority of her opponents, as only a few of her matches were competitive. In her final match of the regular season, she defeated the Hornets’ Mia Columbus 6-1, 6-0.
Parkland’s number three slot was occupied for most of the season by junior Jessica Tseo, who battled through injuries but was back to 100 percent and played very well by the end of the season. In her final match of the year against Emmaus’ Jocelyn Chow, Tseo display a solid all-around game using her forehand and serve to cruise to a 6-0, 6-3 victory.
The doubles team of freshman Sophia Lee and junior Maya Paul really came together during the year, Hingston said. Their cohesiveness was on display during their 6-1, 6-3 victory over Emmaus’ Sonya Boukengolts and Riley Stuckey in the season finale.
Second doubles team, senior Aditi Pallod and senior Sasha Singh, played consistent tennis and worked really hard throughout the season. In their final match of the year, they defeated a tough challenge from Emmaus’ Kristen Heilenman and Ivory Gao to win in straight sets 6-4, 6-3.
The third doubles pairing of junior Punya Bhasin and freshman Kalia Miles really came on as they gained confidence and trust in each other as the year went along. Their final match of the season was perhaps their most thrilling, as they came from behind to beat Emmaus’ Misa Hollinger and Abirmai Chinnakaruppan 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5).
“They’ll never forget that,” Hingston says.
With the regular season completed, Parkland will move on to next week’s District 11 team tournament as the No. 3 seed with a likely first-round match up against No. 7 Liberty. The district doubles tournament is also on the horizon. That event begins Monday, Oct. 15.