Despite Restrictions, Girls Tennis makes State Appearance


Robyn Ryan, Sports Editor

This fall, most high school athletic programs were lucky to even have a season. Given hard work, talent, and proper precautions, the Waunakee Girls Tennis team was able to succeed and make it to the WIAA State Girls Tennis Tournament. 

At the start of the season, the task seemed impossible due to the constant fear of getting their season cut short due to Dane County COVID restrictions, but as time went on, the closer the girls were to the State tournament. 

Their journey to qualifying for the State tournament began at the Badger Subsectional. As a team, they finished second, only two points behind Mukwonago. For singles, These top finishes allowed the team to move onto Sectionals. 

Next up: Hiawatha Golf Course in Tomah, WI. With a long drive on the road and on the course, Freshman Jordan Shipshock shot an 81, finishing the meet third. As a team, the girls placed second, just three strokes behind Tomah. Having qualified for the State tournament, the team wasn’t too phased by the second place finish. They knew they still had one big meet ahead. 

On October 12 and 13th the team played at the Blackwolf Run-Meadow Valley course in Kohler, WI. This was an unknown territory for all but this did not set them back. The top finishers for the Warriors were Freshman Izzi Stricker, Senior Sydney Grimm, and Kinzel T13, followed by Senior Natalie Hoege, 28, and Shipshock, T30. As a team they scored 526 over the two days, tying with Arrowhead for second place in Division 1. 

One of three seniors, Sydney Grimm, reflects on the season saying, “the greatest challenge this year was definitely Covid and not being able to get closer with the team.” The restrictions they faced and shortened season prevented them from doing as many team-bonding activities as they typically would, but they overcame this setback and achieved a goal they had all dreamed of. 

As for Grimm, her favorite moment of the season was returning home after the State tournament,”seeing everybody on the team and being proud of what I have and the team has accomplished.”

“To my team,” she concludes, “ thank you so much for all you have done this season! You’ve made this crazy year the best it could possibly be! You all are amazing golfers and people and I’m so proud of you all.”

Photo: from waunakeegirlsflog on Instagram (left to right: Freshman Jordan Shipshock, Senior Aly Kinzel, Senior Sydney Grimm, Senior Natalie Hoege, Freshman Izzi Stricker)