Having to compete each year against some of the strongest schools in the region, the girls tennis team has emphasized individual success stories and team bonding.
While the team lost standout graduate Beth Yauch last year, senior Olivia Penrod said other girls have stepped up. That means the team’s future looks solid.
“Our varsity lineup is really good, especially sophomore Gabi Moder and junior Emma Overlingas,” Penrod said. “It was fun to watch (Yauch) play, but now I just watch Gabi or Emma and I feel like I’m watching Beth again.”
Moder and Overlingas had a big moment this season, reaching the WPIAL doubles tournament. It was the first time in 20 years that Baldwin has had a girls doubles team make the WPIAL tournament.
Junior Sara Luxemburger said the team has had some difficult matches, especially against Fox Chapel and Oakland Catholic.
“All of them were challenging and close,” Luxemberger said. “We tried our best to keep up the whole time.”
However, the next day in practice was when they would work on turning things around.
“When we lose, we practice even harder the next day and work on what we need to do in order to improve our skills,” Luxemburger said.
Despite the annual tough games against top programs, the girls work together and get along well.
“We all work together as a team and have each others’ backs through every match,” Luxemburger said. “We have strong bonds and love playing the sport with each other, and we just have a great time playing as a team.”
“My favorite part of tennis is the team,” Penrod said. “It creates a great environment and it is full of positivity and laughter.”