Oakville High School head coach Bill Ebert believes his varsity girls’ tennis team could make it to sectionals this year. Photo by Bill Milligan.
By Stephen Glover
For the Call
With the 2018 season starting next week, the Oakville Senior High varsity girls’ tennis team already has their sights set on qualifying for the Missouri Class 2 state sectionals tournament.
“Everyone’s returning,” Oakville head coach Bill Ebert said. “I’m looking forward to maybe this year’s team making sectionals, and we’re banking on our experience to push us that far this season.”
Playing at No. 1 singles this season for the Tigers is sophomore Aleksandra Blagojevic, who saw considerable time in that slot as a freshman.
“Last year was a learning experience for her,” Ebert said. “I’m hoping that she can settle down now and just play her game. I think that the experience that she received as a freshman is going to help her this year.”
Battling for the No. 2 singles spot this season will be senior Taylor Powell and junior Callie Balin.
“They’re pretty even in their game,” Ebert said. “Taylor is a power player, while Callie is more of a finesse player. To be honest, the competition for that No. 2 makes us even stronger this year.”
At No. 4 singles this year will be freshman Bella Hong.
“Bella’s been very competitive in our challenge matches,” Ebert said. “She really knows how to use the court to her advantage.”
Juniors Marissa Montandon, Emma Hitt and Shaelyn Frauenhoffer will all compete in doubles matches this season for the Tigers.
“All three girls are very familiar with doubles play,” Ebert said. “They bring a lot of experience to the varsity team after playing doubles last year on the junior varsity team.”
Ebert also hopes that seniors Caitlin Cavanaugh, Mary Ruzicka and Piper Talley, “an absolute pleasure to coach,” are able to move up the ranks from the junior varsity squad to the varsity lineup.
Editor’s note: This article has been updated with the correct photo.