EHS Girls Tennis Seniors Reflect on Lost Season and What Sports Has Meant to Them

“Being an EHS athlete has given me a lot of pride  and joy that I wouldn’t trade for the world”

With the coronavirus pandemic forcing the closure of schools across the state for the remainder of the 2020 school year, the Everett High spring athletic season also was canceled, taking away from the members of the senior class the opportunity to compete for the last time in a Crimson Tide uniform.

The Independent invited the coaches and members of the EHS spring sports teams from the Class of 2020 to reflect on the season that so abruptly was taken away from them in order that we might give these young athletes some of the recognition that they deserve.

We also asked that they provide some insight into what it means to be an Everett High varsity athlete and briefly to discuss their plans for the future. This week we feature the Everett High girls tennis team and their coach, Courtney Meninger.

We are certain that our readers will be as impressed as we were with the comments from these outstanding young women and join us in wishing them the best in their future endeavors:

The Independent will continue to publish additional comments from the athletes and coaches as we receive them.

EHS Girls Tennis Coach Courtney Meninger

To all the seniors who missed out on their senior year:

This pandemic is something that none of us have seen before and we are thankful for all those who are in the front lines every day. 

When I found out the spring sports season was cancelled, my heart hurt for all the student-athletes who wouldn’t have the chance to participate in their last season, especially the members of my tennis team. 

This was going to be our year! This group of girls is extra-special to me as most of them have been with me since their freshman year, which also was the first year I started coaching tennis. We went from not winning a single match the first year to being one win away from making the state tournament last year. 

I have 11 seniors and each one of them has brought something different to the team. To all my seniors: Ashley, Samantha, Martina, Isabella, Chloe, Paola, Isabelle, Bianca, Sandra, Janice, and Anne, you all will be greatly missed next year. 

Thank you for always supporting one another and for always rooting for each other. Thank you for representing Everett and showing others what it is to be a true student-athlete for the city of Everett.

Good luck in the future — I know you will bring your positive outlook and leadership skills wherever you go!

Samantha Perkins

Being an athlete has kept me sane throughout my time at Everett High School. Even though being a varsity athlete may seem to add more to my already-hectic schedule, it makes everything manageable, as it’s been my greatest stress reliever. 

This year, I didn’t just lose my tennis season. I also lost my senior year of soccer in the fall when I dislocated my knee. I was very upset when school was closed for the year and sports were canceled. 

Even though I was upset, I know things could always be worse, and I’m grateful that my family and I are healthy. In the fall I plan to continue my education by pursuing my Bachelors of Science in Nursing at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. 

I also plan to continue coaching soccer for Everett Soccer Club to give back and provide kids with better opportunities than I had growing up. 

Isabelle Souza

Being an EHS athlete was an experience that I will never forget. I have done field hockey for all my four years of high school and I was glad that I could enjoy it for as long as I did.

But I also played tennis, and unfortunately only got to do it for two years. During my freshman year, I decided not to do it because I had other things on my mind.

But in my sophomore and junior year, when I did do tennis, it was such a blast. I loved tennis because all of us girls were in the same boat, and we had such a fun time. 

When you start to play tennis, it becomes so addicting, and I never wanted to stop. I was so excited for my senior tennis year. But I never got to have it, which  was pretty disappointing. I improved so much and was so excited to see how much more I could do. 

It’s very upsetting, but there was nothing anyone could do about it. But even though I only had those two years, I will truly never forget it — especially our coach, Courtney, who you can tell loves what she does, and wants the best for us all. Thank you Courtney!!

Fortunately for me, I can still play in college. I will be attending Harvard University in the fall to study government and in my free time, will be in a lot of clubs and one of my goals is to play tennis either as an intramural sport or a club sport. I just loved it so much and would love to continue to do it.

Sandra Le

I never thought that I would be playing a sport, not to mention being on the Everett High School’s girls tennis team. Though I haven’t been on the team for very long, it has had a great impact on me. 

It allowed me to come out of my comfort zone and experience something new. I was always afraid of being on a sports team because I thought that I would be embarrassed or laughed at for my mistakes since I did not really know how to play when I was starting out. 

However, that was far from the truth. Yes, I made mistakes while playing on the courts, but my teammates and coach have given me nothing but support and reassurance, which really showed me what being on a team meant. Being an EHS athlete has given me a lot of pride and joy that I wouldn’t trade for the world.

Though I know it was for the best, I can’t help but feel upset about how I won’t be able to enjoy my last season with the team. It is a shame that the season had ended before it could even start, but I will never forget the memories that I had made with the team prior to this year.

In the fall I plan to attend Tufts University, majoring in biology with a pre-med concentration. At Tufts I hope to continue playing tennis intramurally and will take with me the experience that I have learned from being an EHS athlete.

I would like to thank each and every one of my teammates for the memories that I have made and the happiness I felt being on this team. I would also like to thank Coach Courtney for the guidance and support that she has given me. 

Though my heart breaks knowing that I would not be playing for the same team again and having my last few matches, I always will be proud to say that I was an EHS athlete.

Isabella Lacorcia

Before becoming a tennis player, I had always identified myself as either a cheerleader or a dancer — never truly an athlete or a sports person. 

But during my sophomore year I decided to step out of my comfort zone and try something new. Making the tennis team was one of the most memorable things to happen to me during high school. Being a part of something new, and also a member of a team, taught me so many things that I had never experienced before, such as teamwork and self-discipline.

I fell in love with the sport and am so glad I made the choice to try something new. Thank you, Coach Courtney, for giving me this opportunity and experience. My tennis experience would definitely not be what it was if my teammates and I didn’t have a coach like you, supporting us and always pushing us to be better and work harder.

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