Tigers hope to net district tennis titles, with senior boys, fledgling girls
VIERA VOICE Carl Kotala
Seniors Hannah Shuman and Matt Allison are captains on this year’s Holy Trinity boys and girls tennis teams, which should both contend for the district title.
In some ways, they are completely opposite.
The Holy Trinity boys team is loaded with seniors in its top five spots, while the top two players on the girls team are in the sixth and seventh grade.
However, there is one thing both programs have in common this season — and likely for many more seasons to come — they’re both going to be title contenders.
“For districts, we have a really good chance of winning that again, which would be awesome,” senior Matt Allison said. “For regionals … I think we’ve gotten better as a team, so I think we definitely have another good chance to win that.”
Last year’s boys team finally broke through, winning the district title and advancing to the regional finals.
Allison is Holy Trinity’s No. 1 singles player and team captain, followed by freshman Egan Kattenberg and seniors Spencer Sperando, Nick Keiter and Matthew Ryan. Sophomore Hunter Morris and eighth-grader Saurav Ghosal are a formidable doubles team.
“We’ve improved our depth,” coach Mark Harrison said. “We’ve got strength all the way down the line.”
That’s especially true in doubles, where the Tigers can be particularly dangerous in a matchup of strong teams.
“A lot of people count doubles out and it’s (worth) two points,” Allison said. “It’s just as important as two singles matches. Our team is really strong with that, especially with our coach. He’s a really good doubles player and he really coaches us with that.
“If it comes down to a close match, we’re usually able to pull it out because we have a really good doubles team.”
While the boys team is working hard to repeat as district champions, the girls are looking to break through themselves, and believe they have the young talent to do it.
Sixth-grader Anique Kattenberg is the Tigers’ top singles player, followed closely by seventh-grader Ashleigh Kutryb. Hannah Shuman, the only senior in the top group, plays No. 3 and is also the team captain. She is followed by freshman Savannah Kutryb and junior Ravenel Rudd. Freshman Jamie Perry has made the most of her opportunities as well.
“They’re going to be good for years to come,” Harrison said. “We’ve got a shot at winning districts with the girls we’ve got (right now).”
That would prove to be the perfect ending for Shuman, who like Allison, will not look to compete on the court once she gets to college.
It may be her last year, but she has a chance to be part of something special.
“It’s exciting,” Shuman said. “They’re going to help us go as far as we’ve ever gone, so it’s nice to, in my final year, have such good players on the team.” VV