Prior to Thunderstorms, Varsity Tennis Holds Commanding Lead Against Lake Travis

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  • Leaping across the court, Simryn Jacob ’24 puts away a volley. Jacob and her partner Anwi Duduka ’25 have built up their doubles dynamic to complement each other. “[Simryn] is really fast [and] aggressive, and I’m really consistent, so it works really well,” Duduka said.

  • Following the ball with her eyes, Kinaa Graham ’23 jumps to hit a decisive smash and wins the point. Her overhead marked the turning point of the doubles match, allowing Graham and her partner to break their opponent’s serves.

  • Winding up, Dana Kardonik ’24 brushes an arcing forehand cross-court. With her partner Kinaa Graham ’23, Kardonik battled against their two opponents from the start until the moment matchplay was suspended, ending their third-set tiebreak a few points away from victory.

  • Bending her knees, Janya Tellabati ’26 hits a backhand winner down the line. As a freshman, Tellabati has quickly adapted to the team’s energy, and is now playing in the top six lines.

  • Quickly high-fiving before the next point, Siri Raja ’25 and Aditya Paravasthuramesh celebrate Raja’s smooth winning volley. The two struggled initially, but eventually overcame their opponents. “We just took a deep breath and just made the plays [one by one],” Raja said.

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One game away from victory, the varsity tennis team’s match against Lake Travis was canceled due to thunderstorms at 9-0 on Wednesday, Sept. 8.

The team had suffered a crippling defeat to the Cavaliers early in their season last year, narrowly losing 9-10 and ending their run to state. Though the rain-out denied them the opportunity to win decisively, the players were still “feeling pumped,” according to Zoe Chen ‘25.

“We were destroying them and the weather took pity on them and chose to allow them to retreat,” Chen said. “[But] it was nice knowing they no longer held the edge they had last year.”

The match was coming to a close when the thunderstorm warning hit. The overall doubles score was 6-0, with only line-one pair Kinaa Graham ‘23 and Dana Kardonik ‘24 still on court as the rain began. The duo Aditya Paravasthuramesh ‘24 and Sibi Raja ‘25 fought hard against their opponents to gain an advantage, eventually granting them a straight-set win.

“[We work best] when I’m at the baseline [and Aditya] is at the net just because he has good volleys and he knows how to poach,” Raja said. “Our strategy is [to] try to get him to the net as much as possible.”

Though the Warriors quickly overcame the Cavaliers, the loss from last year motivated each player to work harder and have a stronger focus so as to not leave anything up to chance.

“Going into these matches, we have such a good team,” Marko Mesarovic ‘23 said. “We just have to [concentrate] on ourselves more. My concentration kind of led me through the whole match.”

Three more singles matches paved the way to triumph. At 9-0, Raja was dominating 7-0 in his eight game pro-set when head coach Travis Dalrymple suspended all play due to lighting in the vicinity.

“[Our loss against] Lake Travis last year was a good eye-opener,” Chen said. “Even though we have one of the best teams in the state we still have to work hard for everything that we do. We’ve learned to respect one another more. And everyone’s been bringing the heat.”

The match against Lake Travis has not been rescheduled. Varsity takes the court again on Tuesday, Sept. 13 to battle Round Rock High School.