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updated: 9/1/2011 8:54 PM

Northwest/ Girls tennis season preview

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  • Zoe Kasuriak hopes to lead Barrington to an 18th consecutive Mid-Suburban League girls tennis title.

       Zoe Kasuriak hopes to lead Barrington to an 18th consecutive Mid-Suburban League girls tennis title.
    JOE LEWNARD | Staff Photographer

  • Buffalo Grove looks to defend its Mid-Suburban East title with No. 1 singles player Elise Mousseau.

       Buffalo Grove looks to defend its Mid-Suburban East title with No. 1 singles player Elise Mousseau.
    JOE LEWNARD | Staff Photographer

 

By Jonathan Jones

Daily Herald Correspondent

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Mid-Suburban West

Barrington

Coach: Tracy Waters-Miller

Last year's record: MSL and sectional champions; seventh in state

Top players: No 1. doubles team Zoe Kasuriak/Kate Allison; No. 2 doubles team Haley Mallon/Alia Nejwadi

Outlook: Fillies hope to push their success to an astonishing 18th consecutive MSL title. With a strong seventh-place state tournament finish showing in 2010, the Fillies strive to achieve similar results. The Fillies lost four-year state qualifier Kristy Dodge, now playing for Michigan, but Kasuriak, Allison and Nejwadi qualified for the state tournament in 2010 and will among the many team leaders on Barrington.

Coach's comment: "We hope to continue with the success our program has had in the past years. (We'll need to have) the ability to work together. Every point counts."

Conant

Coach: Jennifer Mogge

Last year's record: Second in MSL West and third at MSL tournament.

Fremd

Coach: Lauren Hall

Last year's record: Eighth in MSL and fourth in MSL West

Top players: Seniors Shannon Segin and Maggie Lundholm

Outlook: The Vikings' main priority is to close out matches. In 2010, many of their matches came down to one position in winning or losing dual matches. With only few matches under their belt as a doubles team, Segin and Lundholm turned heads in their sectional and gained a berth in the state tournament in 2010. The Vikings' goal is to finish in the top three of the MSL and qualify players for state.

Coach's comments: "There was a huge emphasis on playing in the off-season and we rose to the challenge. The varsity level went away to camps such as (Wisconsin) Whitewater and Notre Dame. This year we have emphasized consistency, competitive match play and playing offensively."

Hoffman Estates

Coach: Greg Rouse

Last year's record: Ninth in MSL and fourth in MSL West

Top players: Sophomore No. 1 singles player Courtney Lang

Outlook: Hoffman sent Lang to state in 2010 as a freshman and Rouse plans on her advancing deeper into the state tournament. Rouse is drilling the Hawks on focusing on the consistency to win close matches.

Coach's comments: "Our goal is to qualify as many people as we can for state. We need more consistency and I'd like to see the girls peak in performance around the conference tournament."

Palatine

Coach: Anita Lee

Last year's record: Fifth in MSL and fourth in MSL West

Top players: Seniors Maggie Van Grondelle and Sara Davis

Outlook: The Pirates expect results from the varsity tenured seniors and new talented sophomores. The goal of Palatine is not to hold anything back. Lee hopes to see the Pirates advance to the middle of the MSL West. The Pirates impressed Lee in 2010 by gaining back-to-back second-place finishes in the Naperville Central and Vernon Hills Invites. Van Grondelle joins the Pirates for the first year after winning a badminton state title in the spring and Lee feels VanGrondelle has the best hands on the team.

Coach's comments: "I'd like to see them peaking around conference. We have a difficult sectional. We had a lot more girls come out in the summer and take private lessons this year. I'm curious to see how we fall into place in the MSL"

Schaumburg

Coach: Jenn Limjoco-Kerr

Last year's record: 1-15; 10th in conference

Top players: Katie McClure, Jordan Parris, Divya Singh and Lindsay Solar

Outlook: The Saxons are in a rebuilding year. Junior singles player Monica Lin qualified and peaked at fifth place in the state tournament in 2010. Still uncertain of Lin's return, rookie coach Limjoco-Kerr doesn't want to see her players go through the season without a fight. Top players McClure, Parris, Singh and Solar will lead the team in the 2011 season.

Coach's comments: "Our team motto is 'Practice how you play,' and I stress that everyday. Our attendance was up by about 10 percent in summer camp. Almost all of our varsity and JV members played with us this summer. We had several girls continue to play in the offseason. Our goal is to place better in conference than last year."

Mid-Suburban East

Buffalo Grove

Coach: Kevin Schrammel

Last year's record: 12-3, 5-0 and first in MSL East, second in MSL

Top players: Junior No. 1 singles player Elise Mousseau, senior No. 2 singles player Kristen Immen and No. 1 doubles team Dana and Lauren Goggin

Outlook: It's difficult to replace a three-time state qualifier in Nell Boyd, who is playing at Drake. The Bison lost No. 2 singles player Allie Wieland and Susan Dote as well, however, the Goggin twins qualified for two straight state tournaments. The Bison went 5-0 in conference and hope to defend their MSL East title again.

Coach's comments: "It'll be tough (to repeat as MSL East champs) because we don't know about conference. We love to compete against Barrington and we want to give ourselves a chance to win every year. (Rolling) Meadows is always strong, so we'll have our hands full. I think we can qualify some people again for state, but Deerfield and Stevenson are always tough in sectionals."

Elk Grove

Coach: Kristen Harding

Last year's record: 10th in MSL tournament and fifth in MSL East.

Top players: Senior Kerry Trotter, junior Taylor Marquardt and sophomore Sammy Marquardt

Outlook: Trotter just fell short of making state in doubles last year. With seven returning varsity members, Elk Grove has a strong core group as the underclassmen work their way up. Harding changes practice strategies constantly in order to adjust to her players' needs.

Coach's comment: "We need to improve on our conference record from last year. We do a lot of station training. Nonconference matches are generally easier for the girls. We have a couple players that are very versatile."

Hersey

Coach: Sharon Meintzer

Last year's record: 6-12, seventh in MSL tourney

Top players: Seniors Olivia Hirt, Jen Hall, Megan Boyle, Emily Moody and freshman Sara Magnuson.

Outlook: Meintzer expects to see the Huskies working in sync with the season philosophy of 'Walk the Talk,' and she enjoys their strides to finish in the top four teams of the MSL. Meintzer feels seniors Boyle, Hirt, Hall and Moody have the brawn and the brains to lead this team to big gains from previous years in the MSL.

Coach's comments: "We are working on aggressive play at the net to increase confidence and to finish out the point and win. We worked our underclassmen into the lineup last year and they have already surpassed the skill of the 2010 seniors. We've added many new players to our roster this season as well as our coaching staff with the addition of former state champ Cece Cahill."

Prospect

Coach: Mike McColaugh

Last year's record: 6-5, 3-2 and third in MSL East, fourth overall in MSL.

Top players: Senior Maggie Partridge, doubles team Tracy Becherer/Katie Best, singles player Jordan Pollock and doubles team Laura Dietrich/Lauren Nopar

Outlook: Prospect found a lot of success in 2010 as Partridge and Julie Hertrich graduated doubles partner qualified for the state tournament. The Knights finished fourth in the conference tournament and look to move forward in 2011. Longtime head coach Karie McClure stepped down after last season and McColaugh is optimistic because of the strong attendance at summer camp this year. With the addition of newcomers to the team and the nucleus of returning starters, McColaugh sees depth as a strength.

Coach's comments: "We are working hard on getting to the net and playing an attacking style of tennis. We also talk a lot about competing and staying positive at all times during matches. We have not talked in terms of numbers, but our goal is always to improve throughout the season and contend for the East title."

Rolling Meadows

Coach: Jim Gumz

Last year's record: 8-8, 4-1 and second in MSL East, fifth in MSL

Top players: Juniors Sarah Bohac, Meghan Horan, Brittany Khayet and Shannon Kulpins; sophomores Allie and Jackie Kemph.

Outlook: Meadows continued to achieve as it lost its only MSL East match to Buffalo Grove in 2010. With only three seniors lost from a young team, a slew of juniors take over the reins of direction. Gumz hopes to sort out singles and solidify his doubles teams.

Coach's comments: "We emphasize conditioning, skill development, patterns of play and strategy during practice. Our goal is the continued improvement as a team so we will be competitive with the rest of the MSL"

Wheeling

Coach: Jim Christopher

Last year's record: 6-8, sixth in MSL East, 12th in MSL

Top players: Seniors No. 1 singles player Dani Bittout, No. 1 doubles team Lea Valenti/Rachel Stephani

Outlook: The Wildcats had a strong nonconference showing in 2010, but had difficulties in the MSL. Although their record was 0-5 in the East, many of their matches were close with one position being the difference. Christopher looks for aggressiveness and confidence to close out matches. The goal for the Wildcats is finishing with a .500 record in the MSL.

Coach's comments: "We want to transfer our confidence into the conference matches with our nonconference success. We will achieve our goals in increments. Making the state tournament isn't impossible. We have a great sophomore class growing with momentum. They are really receptive."

CSL North

Maine West

Coach: Neal Sipkovsky

Last year's record: 6-8

Top players: Sophomore doubles team Rachel Anderson/Ania Holubecki and senior Cara Franke

Outlook: Maine West takes its game to the next level against nonconference teams. With Highland Park, Deerfield and Glenbrook North normally filling the first three slots of the CSL North, Maine West's goal is place fourth above Niles North and Maine East.

Coach's comments: "It is imperative to do well in nonconference matchups. We like take advantage of that portion on our schedule. It is important to get a strong start. This year presents an opportunity to pass Niles North and Maine East."

WSC Gold

Leyden

Coach: Bob Smith

Last year's record: 4-2 in WSC Gold

Top players: Seniors No. 1 doubles team Adrianna Sanchez/Christina Cervantes, No. 2 doubles team Nicole Witczak/Sylvia Sokolowski and senior Yaritza Mendez.

Outlook: In 2010, Leyden sent No. 1 singles Kornelia Nowaczyk to state but she graduated with Ashley Barrera and Claire Neri. The Eagles look for another solid season from a core of junior varsity players last year and Smith, who was inducted into the IHSA Tennis Hall of Fame, feels they obtained increased experience to fill Leyden's vacant positions.

Coach's comment: "I expect us to finish third in conference. A lot of girls came to summer camp, all the starters showed up right away. The depth of our team has no drop-off. We had big wins against Downers Grove and Hinsdale South last season, and hopefully we can top our goals from last year."

East Suburban Catholic

St. Viator

Coach: Dan Tripamer

Last year's record: 4-15

Top players: Seniors Katie Kilmeya, Megan Thompson and Natalie Cataldo

Outlook: Tripamer feels that the Lions are still in a rebuilding stage, however the underclassmen have a chance to best 2010s results. St. Viator struggled finishing dual matches, but the young talent presents plans to accomplish more in 2011. Despite the fact a summer camp was canceled, Tripamer recommended private lessons and tournament play during summer vacation.

Coach's comments: "I'm determined to really build the program. I encourage the girls to play other sports, but if they want to play tennis, you have to have a commitment to compete. We struggled last year, and we hope to build up a little bit more competitiveness this year."

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