On October 21, Mayfair put up a great fight against Norwalk's tennis team, though they lost.
Each player had to endure three matches until one player or team reached six points. Three players from Mayfair were playing singles (1 vs 1) and six players in groups of two were playing doubles (2 vs. 2). Out of the 18 matches played, Norwalk won twelve and Mayfair six, three of which were won by the team’s senior captain, Savannah Ford. Unfortunately, no other matches were won for the other singles by senior Emily Le and freshman Sara Villalta. As for the doubles, each team won one out of the three matches they played in. Watching them play and experiencing the intensity of the game through the teams’ expressions and behavior on the court was incredible.
In order to win a match, one player needs to receive six points, but they must have a 2 point lead. If both teams or players have the same -- or close -- score they go into a “deuce”, in which the team has to score 2 points consecutively in order to win. One point can be received in multiple different ways. The most common way to gain a point is if after serving the opposite player fails to return the ball. When a player hits a ball out of bounds the opposing player gets a point. Another way a player can get a point is if the server fails to get the ball over the net or in the smaller, proper corresponding box. If you’d like to further understand how the game works, there is an incredibly informational video here:
After each match, the players had a small break in between and I had the chance to interview the captains and seniors Savannah Ford and Emily Le who both began to play for the team their sophomore year. When asked about their season, Ford mentioned, “I think this season was pretty good for 85% of the team starting a couple months before the season started. I think they were pretty good, I’m really proud of them, they’ve progressed a lot.” Being a captain was especially difficult this year due to the set back caused by Covid-19 and the policies everyone had to follow in order to stay safe. She explains that her secret to winning a game is putting on her earrings that she’s had since she was a baby and goes on to say that she, “never lost a game with them.” Co- captain Le, who is also in track, expresses that this game was difficult for her. She was injured and not in the best condition mentally and physically. Although she reveals that they will be going to CIF this year, their season has not gone as expected because “everyone here is pretty much new so we had to start from the basics, so it was really hard for us to actually learn how to play the game.” After talking to freshmen Jocelyn Mendoza, Izel Ramirez, and Natalie Schulz it is clear that this is a tight-knit loving team. They all truly care about each other and want to see one another grow and succeed. They’ve spent so much time together that they’ve bonded like a family and have had tons of fun this season.
Coach Tran, who plays tennis himself, has been coaching since 2003. He played tennis in high school and chose to coach when he got to Mayfair. He talks about how time was taken away from him and his team which has made it difficult to train them and prepare them for a new season since most of them are new.. Although he worries about the team, his biggest priority is to ensure that they “enjoy the sport because you really have to enjoy it to do well. If you don't enjoy it, forget it, there's no reason for you to do something you don't like.” He seems like such a great coach and someone who truly cares about the well-being of his team.
Considering the obstacles they’ve faced, the Mayfair tennis team is growing to become a strong and connected team for many years to come. The Windjammer wishes them luck in League as well in their future endeavors.