Strong leadership and young talent highlight Lakeridge this year

The Lakeridge girls tennis team features a strong mix of leadership and youth on this year's team which hopes to be competitive in the rigid Three Rivers League.

The Pacers return two strong senior captains in Brittany Dales and Kate Kitto and junior captains Anna Seydel and Shea Northfield, all who have extensive varsity experience.

“We're a cohesive group with strong leadership and we have depth with some new freshman talent,” coach Char Anderson said.

Dales won the consolation bracket in singles at state last year and returns as the team's No. 1 player this year with Seydel filling in at No. 2 for the Pacers.

Lakeridge features a strong doubles contingent with Stacey Strovink and Katie Ellis playing at No. 1 and Kitto and Northfield at No. 2.

In the team's first league match against Lake Oswego this year, the Pacers fell 7-1 but Kitto and Northfield picked up an impressive victory 6-3, 6-4.

Kavya Sreedhar and Marie Kanapeaux are also expected to be strong singles players for Lakeridge this season.

Rounding out the bracket in doubles, the team of Olivia Onustock and Kristin Taylor will be a force at No. 3 doubles while Emily Gauci and Yumi are currently filling in at No. 4.

Lakeridge is also a deep squad this year with strong freshmen and JV players who could see varsity time.

So far this year, Lakeridge has seen plenty of court time due to the good early weather which has given the team a chance to practice more than usual.

“We've been focusing on good fundamentals and, as we head into a heavy match schedule, se are adding doubles and singles strategy into the mix,” Anderson said.

The league figures to be very strong this year with Lake Oswego leading the way as the presumptive favorite. Grant and West Linn also feature some very strong individual players.

“Our goal is to be mentally and physically prepared to play each and every match as competitively as possible so we can place in the top three in the league,” Anderson said.

The Pacers are also working to get players and doubles teams seeded for the district tournament to improve their prospects for qualifying players for state.

Lakeridge picked up an important league victory earlier this week, knocking off West Linn 5-3 in a match that featured a handful of impressive rallies.

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