Tennis Team Starts Season Fresh

A strong start to the season shows promise in the young team.

Hannah Boer
Lucy Wagner ’17 celebrates after scoring a point against a Jefferson player on Tuesday, April 4th.

On Tuesday, the girls varsity tennis team played and won its first match of the season at Cedar Rapids Jefferson. The team is back on the courts this year with several new players and new team captain Lucy Wagner ’17. Having made it to state quarterfinals for the last three years in a row, Lucy takes the lead with no intention of slowing down anytime soon.

The varsity team lost five of its eight traveling players at the end of last season and the change in group dynamic creates both a challenge and opportunity for its returning varsity members, Wagner, Amelia Prybil ’17 and Bihotza James ’18.

“We’re kind of in that awkward stage where we’re trying to build a team. [Last year] we had a very solid team,” Wagner said.

“The fact that we can help the incoming freshmen and help rebuild the team, I think that’s a strength, and the fact that we don’t have these established relationships, we can build new ones,” Prybil added.

The two incoming freshmen are Kelsey Law ’20 and Caroline Carter ’20. While both are new to the team, coach Fred Pedersen is confident in their abilities.

“I think we’ll be fine. I really do. I’m really comfortable with the girls, they work hard. I tell them everyday, let’s just try to get a little bit better. So if you’re better today than you were yesterday, everything’s going in the right direction.” Pedersen said.

With so many new players and high expectations set for the season, the girls can feel the pressure, but coach Pedersen is making sure they all stay calm on the court.

“I always try working on creating a low stress environment. The girls put enough stress on themselves so I like to create an environment where they can feel comfortable,” Pedersen said. “I kind of look at every match as the same, I don’t try to hype up any match.”

City girls varsity tennis will play eight matches between now and Regionals on May 13th. The team is especially looking forward to playing West High on May 2nd and Prairie on May 9th. A full list of match dates and locations can be found at