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Archive for the ‘Girls Tennis’ Category

Coupeville’s Jaimee Masters, a two-sport athlete who also possesses oodles of artistic talent. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Talent on the court, talent off the court.

A highly-accomplished artist and two-sport athlete, Jaimee Masters had a sizable impact during her days at Coupeville High School.

She followed in the footsteps of cousin Hope Lodell on the volleyball court, but carved out her own solid reputation.

A hard worker with a team-first attitude, Jaimee played all four seasons during high school, working her way into being a valuable role player for the Wolf varsity.

Masters played multiple positions on the court, but always gave her all.

As a senior, she played in 29 of 30 sets during a pandemic-shortened campaign, racking up a solid number of digs as a dependable back-row assassin for a CHS squad which claimed second-place in the Northwest 2B/1B League.

Her tenacity and solid work ethic greatly helped her on the tennis court, as well.

Playing both singles and doubles over the course of her hardcourt run, Jaimee ended her prep net career by teaming with Emily Fiedler to form Coupeville’s #1 doubles duo.

The seniors didn’t get to play as many matches as they might have liked — again with the Covid restrictions — but they took advantage of every opportunity presented.

“Prepare to die, Mr. Tennis Ball!”

Facing off with Friday Harbor in a six-match royal rumble, Coupeville went undefeated during Jaimee’s senior season.

As in truly undefeated, with a 6-0 mark in team matches, and a 30-0 record in individual rumbles.

Masters and Fiedler strolled to straight-sets wins in all six of their matches, winning them by a combined score of 72-11.

They were brutal, efficient, and remarkably kind to the rival players they were battering, showcasing their athletic skills, but also their compassion.

While sports accomplishments are the driving force behind this blog, it’s also worth noting that Jaimee’s talents go far beyond the athletic world.

During the early days of Covid lockdown, with no games to write about, I transitioned a bit and tried to highlight other skills.

One of those areas was artwork, and Jaimee was a particular standout there, showing off works of precise beauty and artistry.

That mixture of talent, hard work, and a caring soul helped her accomplish great things during her school days in Coupeville, and should serve her well as she charges out into the adult world.

Today, though, we’re bringing Jaimee back for a moment, as we induct her into the Coupeville Sports Hall o’ Fame.

It’s a well-deserved honor for a remarkable young woman, and, after this, you can catch her hanging out at the top of the blog, up under the Legends tab.

Jaimee never asked for praise, but instead went out and earned it every step of the way.

The true mark of a great one.

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Avalon Renninger, a lethal lefty on the court. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

This blog turns nine years old August 15, and to mark the occasion, I’m picking what I view as the best nine Wolf athletes from each active CHS sport.

To be eligible, you had to play for the Wolves between Aug. 2012-Aug. 2021, AKA the “Coupeville Sports” years.

So here we go. Each day between Aug. 1-15, a different sport and (probably) a different argument.

 

They are the queens.

Girls tennis owns the most league titles of any sport in the history of Coupeville High School, and it’s not really close.

Long, successful runs by coaches Cliff Horr and Ken Stange — with the latter guru still out there patrolling the courts — have been instrumental.

But it’s also helped to have really-talented players along the way.

Going through the last nine seasons (well, technically eight, as we lost one campaign to Covid), the competition was fierce for the nine slots on my “all-star” squad.

A mix of singles aces and doubles pros, it’s a roster built to win titles, again and again.

A young Valen Trujillo, already a fashion icon.

Payton Aparicio — Raw talent for days, but she also worked far harder than often given credit for. Teamed with Sage Renninger to form a doubles unit which was like a buzz-saw when unleashed, up to smacking a rival with a ball every once in awhile.

Bree Daigneault — She would knock your brains out on the court, then make you feel better than if you had won. Showering her opponents with genuine compliments after nearly every point, she was always kind and humble, a ray of sunshine in an often-bleak world.

Amanda d’Almeida — A superior athlete who could out-gun and out-run almost every foe. Started as a doubles player, then morphed into a singles sensation after her partner moved off-Island, and a winner no matter where she landed in the lineup.

Jackie Ginnings — The ultimate grinder, she would stay on the court for 17 hours, if need be, wearing down the girl on the other side of the net until they could take no more. Nothing seemed to throw her, as she handled good points and bad with the same quiet resiliency.

Allie Hanigan — She used her height to dominate at the net, and her often-unexpected speed to chase down almost everything flung her way. Maybe the most-poised Wolf netter of the past decade.

Avalon Renninger — A lethal lefty who sliced ‘n diced foes with a small smile carefully-hidden on her face. Always gave maximum effort while showcasing a motor which never stops.

Sage Renninger — Big sis teamed with Aparicio to form the most-deadly doubles duo of the blog era, girls or boys. State tourney veterans who could grind you down, or smack you right off the court.

Valen Trujillo — A perfect example of a saint off the court, a cutthroat killer between the lines. Baked goodies for her teammates, made lifelong friends with the girls from other schools she thumped, and did it all in super-classy style.

Tia Wurzrainer — An underrated warrior, she improved by leaps and bounds each season while teaming with Avalon Renninger to form an elite doubles duo which was primed to ascend the mountaintop as seniors, only to have Covid sweep away their final campaign.

Sage Renninger (left) and Payton Aparicio, a premier doubles duo.

 

Up next: We head to the gridiron.

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Nothing dims Genna Wright’s smile. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Genna Wright is a prodigy.

Springing from a family of athletes, the youngest one in the bunch might be the most talented one.

Which is saying a lot when all of your siblings, and your parents, have a heapin’ helpin’ of natural talent mixed with a burning desire to excel.

Owner of one of the sunniest personalties in Coupeville, Genna has rare star quality.

She looks the part. She acts the part.

Whether you’ve known her for years or merely walk past her for the first time, one glance and you know there’s something special about Wright.

She’s got that whole Matthew McConaughey, laid-back surfer personality going on, but there’s never been a doubt she is driven to be the best at everything she attempts.

Even as a young athlete, her love of competition was obvious.

Over the past six years, as she played numerous sports as a middle school, then high school athlete, I’ve witnessed more than one Genna Wright.

I’ve seen her in happier moments — mobbed by teammates after scoring, or lounging with prairie buddy Mollie Bailey, two very-personable young women delighting in friendship and inside jokes.

And I’ve seen Genna in some of her lowest public moments — dealing with the rawness of a season-ending loss, or trying to come to terms with a brutal injury.

Through it all, her spirit, her love of life and those closest to her, her uncanny ability to light up the world around her, have never lagged.

That injury, which cost her an entire season of soccer and a chance to claim the school’s career scoring title on the pitch, was as unfair as they come.

Blown up from behind as she charged after a ball headed for the sideline, at a moment when it wasn’t necessary, Wright shredded virtually everything important in one of her highly-talented legs.

It was a devastating injury, one which required major surgery and a long, torturous rehab.

Which she endured with great grace and admirable grit.

In public, Wright never betrayed her anger or sadness over the lost opportunities, instead choosing to become her teammate’s loudest and proudest cheerleader during her absence from the pitch.

She could have hidden away, but she embraced positivity — something which she has done every step of the way as I have documented her prep sports career.

And what a career it has been — even with the dual daggers of injury and then a pandemic.

Now a bionic woman, yet still fighting for every point.

Wright was the #1 singles player for the Coupeville High School tennis team her entire career — something not accomplished even by Wolf net legends such as Amanda d’Almeida or Valen Trujillo.

CHS coach Ken Stange looked at his irrepressible freshman, dared her to accept the mantle of greatness from day one, and then, like all of us, was wowed when Genna embraced her destiny with a grin (and a nasty forehand).

Whether playing against ritzy Seattle-based private schools, or leading the Wolves to conference crowns, Wright was money in the bank.

All around her, the fortunes of other CHS players rose and fell, through tough matches and easy walk-overs.

But then there was Wright, camped out on her own private patch of court, ripping winners, mixing in graceful parries with booming winners, and, occasionally, arching one eyebrow at dad Ron when he got particularly enthuiastic over her play.

Put her on the soccer pitch, and Genna was maybe even more amazing.

I’m not the most-knowledgable soccer aficionado, but even I could tell she’s something special with a ball on her foot, and a scared goaltender awaiting her impending arrival.

Wright could score from any angle, and, even with all the time lost to injury, still finished as the #3 scorer in CHS girls soccer history.

But she was also a great set-up artist, flicking passes through feet, leaving the ball in just the right spot for one of her teammates to benefit.

And Wright was as tough as any young woman to pull on a Wolf jersey.

Foes flung elbows at her, lashed out at her with wayward legs, did everything legal (and some things maybe not so much legal) to keep her away from the net, but Genna wasn’t here for their shenanigans.

She could bash with the best of them, and, while playing with a remarkably-clean style, was more than able to unleash a bit of the ol’ skull cracker when necessary.

“They call me the Grave Digger, Gramps, cause I bury fools.”

An accomplished student off the field, Genna — like siblings KeriAnne, Aaron, and Sarah before her — is the complete package.

Smart, tough when it matters, talented, funny, genuinely kind at all times — high-achievers who carry themselves with a quiet confidence while declining to thump on their chests while screaming about their superiority — they reflect well on parents Ron and Christine.

Falling back on one of the oldest puns in the book, they do things the … Wright way.

Today we welcome Genna into the Coupeville Sports Hall o’ Fame, where she joins Sarah in hanging out up at the top of the blog under the Legends tab.

In the grand scheme of things, it’s not the first or last honor the youngest Wright will receive, but it is a testament to how highly thought of she is by those who have watched her from the stands these past six years.

With some athletes, you never know what you will get from game to game.

With Genna Wright, there has never been a doubt — you will get her best each and every time out.

Buy your ticket, or go in for free, and you will see a young woman whose mere presence is a guarantee of something special.

She’s like a freakin’ ray of (very-talented) sunshine, she is.

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Vivian Farris and her CHS tennis teammates had a sensational spring. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Eryn Wood (left) and Noelle Daigneault are expected to be team leaders when they return next spring.

They ran the table.

6-0 in team matches.

30-0 in individual varsity matches.

The battle for the Northwest 2B/1B League title during this pandemic-shortened season was a two-school rumble between Coupeville and Friday Harbor, and the former dominated the latter.

Putting a final punctuation mark on the whole affair, the Wolves closed their most-recent campaign with another 5-0 win over the Wolverines, this one coming Monday at Friday Harbor.

Now, in a lightning-fast turnaround, Coupeville coach Ken Stange bids adieu to his female netters, and will be back on the CHS courts Tuesday to welcome his boys squad back to action.

With traditional fall sports being played AFTER spring sports as everyone deals with the fallout from Covid, the Wolf boys will play the first of their six matches April 7.

Stange, now in his 16th year of coaching both CHS net squads, got the most he could out of the girls season, shuffling players around and giving as many volleyers as possible a crack at playing in a varsity match.

Monday’s road trip was the final prep tennis match for three Wolf seniors, as Jaimee Masters, Emily Fiedler, and Genna Wright wrapped up long, successful runs.

Masters and Fiedler played as Stange’s #1 doubles duo during their senior campaign, while Wright lived at #1 singles for her entire four-year CHS journey.

 

Complete Monday results:

 

Varsity:

1st Singles — Genna Wright beat Allie Fleming 6-0, 6-1

2nd Singles — Abby Mulholland beat Lucy Martin 6-2, 6-1

1st Doubles — Jaimee Masters/Emily Fiedler beat Liliia Gamez/Emilie Mason 6-0, 6-0

2nd Doubles — Eryn Wood/Helen Strelow beat Amelia Eltinge/Ava Martin 6-3, 6-1

3rd Doubles — Mary Milnes/Katelin McCormick beat Lucy Marinkovich/Eleanor Rollins 4-6, 6-1, 10-5

 

JV:

4th Doubles — Lucy Tenore/Sophie Martin beat Trinity Cullen/Isabella VanderYacht 8-0

5th Doubles — Hayley Fiedler/Vivian Farris beat Elanor Gislason/Sidney Herda 8-2

6th Doubles — Nozomi Hagihara/Hayley Thomas beat Eva Sanabria/Lilli Turnbow 8-5

7th Doubles — Gwen Crowder/Strelow beat Annabelle Mountford/? 8-3

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The day was grey, but Melanie Navarro’s future is bright. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

The camera rarely rests.

Bouncing between Oak Harbor and Coupeville, wanderin’ photo whiz kid John Fisken had a busy weekend, shooting a little here, a little there.

The photos above and below capture Wolf softball and girls tennis teams in action as both clinched Northwest 2B/1B League titles.

To see everything Fisken snapped, and maybe buy a nice present or two for the grandparents, pop over to the links below.

SB 2021-03-27 vs Darrington – John’s Photos

GT 2021-03-26 vs Friday Harbor – John’s Photos

Emily Fiedler combines ballet with tennis.

Three generations of Wolf softball experts.

Jill Prince, about to make a sensational mid-air, bare-handed catch after a line drive smacked off her glove.

Maya Lucero makes the ball pop into super-focus.

Jaimee Masters glides into a shot.

Celebrating being 9-0.

Genna Wright lunges for a winner.

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