Girls Tennis Wins All But One Set in Opener

There is no doubt the Girls Varsity Tennis team has enough talented personnel to put together another successful season this spring. After losing only two players from last year’s squad, Andover’s strength this year will be its depth and experience playing together. Co-Captain Maggie Maffione ’08 commented, “We were undefeated last year, and with the line-up as strong and determined as it is, I really can’t see anything but an incredible season ahead.” Co-Captain Lauren Wilmarth ’09 commented on the team’s goals for the rest of the season, “Our initial goal is to start out strong and try and improve each match. We definitely have potential to win Interschols this year, however, we are focusing on each individual match right now.” Andover proved its power as a team at its first match on Wednesday afternoon. Despite very little practice time, the team crushed its BB&N opponents, 14-1. Wilmarth was slotted at the number one position and won her first set 6-4 and her second set 6-2. Her strong backhand strokes were one of various aspects that contributed to her win. At the number two position, returning player Eliza Flynn ’10 used her powerful serve to triumph in both her sets, winning 6-1 and 6-3 respectively. New Senior Belinda Hernandez ’08 played extremely well in her first match playing with Andover. Her ability to hit deep shots kept her opponent off-balance, eventuallyleading to her 6-4 and 7-5 straight-set victory. At the number four position, Co-Captain Maffione, as always, played with a huge amount of intensity, winning in straight sets. Returning player Ari Van Sluytman ’08 also won her match in two sets and Rachel Blake ’08 lost her first set but rebounded to win her second. Andover’s doubles teams played just as well as the singles. Co-Captain Wilmarth and Flynn played at the number one doubles position and aced their opponent 8-0. Co-captain Maffione and Hernandez had a more unusual match. Due to a lack of time, the match started out at 2-2, instead of at love all. Despite this unordinary start, they forcefully won the next six games and won all but two points throughout the entire match. Returning players Tori Wilmarth ’09 and Carolyn Brown ’09 played well in the number three doubles position, defeating their opponents 8-4. Tori Wilmarth commented on Andover’s match against BB&N, “Today our team spirit and cohesiveness really came through.” Following the team’s triumphant defeat over BB&N on Wednesday, Andover will play Groton, and Deerfield this upcoming weekend.