Girls Tennis Preview

If you are a student at Ames High School, you HAVE to know about the Ames HIgh Girls Tennis Team. With four state wins in a row, as well as the “triple crown” (1st in team state, 1st in state singles, 1st in state doubles) for the past two years, this team is one of the most successful sports teams at Ames High School. Both boys and girls tennis at Ames High have been very successful in the past couple of years, with the boys team earning state runner up last year, and state champions the year before that. With the tennis teams also boasting one of the highest average GPA’s of all sports teams at AHS, Girls’ Tennis certainly has a lot to live up to. However, at the end of last year, a couple events happened that changed the makeup of the team. Len Thiede, who had been the tennis coach for 31 years, made the decision to retire. Second, the team lost their number one and two players- graduates Jessica King and Sophia Smarandescu, respectively. Both players had been part of the state champion teams for the past three years as well. This year, girls tennis members will once again play ranking matches to determine the order of the 1-7 spots, which comprise the state team. Now, in the face of all these changes, the big question is: Can the AHS Girls’ Team make history and secure their fifth win in a row this season? The new tennis coach this year is Luke Boyd, who has coached previously at the Ames Racquet and Fitness Center. “I know I have big shoes to fill, but I am very excited for the season to begin,” Boyd said. The tennis players themselves are also earnest to get going with the season. Senior Ann Ku, state doubles champion with Sophia Smarandescu last year said, "It’ll be tough this year, but I’m looking forward to a lot of fun this season. Everyone on the team is really supportive, and everyone gives their very best no matter what level they’re playing at.” This season, Ku will be playing for her fourth year as a top 6 member. The Ames High Girls’ Tennis team has a history of success and drive to win, and with any luck, their upcoming season will be as successful as those they have had in the past.