By Jacki Wood
The Maryville girls tennis team will look notably different this season following the graduation of five varsity players from the 2018 squad.
Head coach Nicole McGinness enters her 10th year with the Spoofhounds and said she is looking forward to the season despite how different it will be from last year.
“We have a lot of new faces so it will be a fun and different experience to the team,” McGinness said. “With the graduation of so many seniors, we will be looking to play to the best of our ability.”
Those seniors included Morgan Goodridge, Cayren Barnett, Emma Webb-Kirkpatrick, Chiara Ghera and Kamryn Gastler who, along with Addison Hall, went 12-5 last year and won districts.
Hall, now a senior, will step up into the captain’s role.
“She is a strong leader,” McGinness said. “She works hard and helps the underclassmen with her positive attitude.”
McGinness said sophomore Athena Groumoutis also played varsity last year and is expected to make an impact for the Hounds as well as sophomores Lauren Cullin and Arianne Skidmore, who have come out strong during their first few practices.
This year’s team goals are for the girls to play to the best of their ability and have fun, McGinness said, while also focusing on improving their doubles play.
“Last year, the girls had great success in singles,” she said. “They all played their hearts out. This year, we want to continue the momentum with singles and really get the doubles play going. They all work well together so the doubles will come together.”
That will be especially important when they face tough opponents like Savannah, Chillicothe and St. Pius X as well as the Staley Falcons, who the Spoofhounds will see in their season opener on Tuesday, September 3 at Northwest Missouri State University.