Lady Lion girls’ tennis takes over District Six Championship


Kamryn Ryen

Ready set go. Senior Alese Rinker gets ready to hit the ball that is coming towards her. Rinker competed against freshman Morgan Stevens in the District Six singles championship at Mansion Park.

McKenzie Quirin, Reporter

Nearly all of the girls on the tennis team play individually or with a partner which is common in the world of tennis. 

This year the girls’ tennis team observed a match not many will see again. 

On Oct. 2 the District Six Class 3A singles tennis championship at Mansion Park was an all-Altoona final.  Top-seeded senior Alese Rinker and unseeded freshman Morgan Stevens faced off against each other for the first time. 

Rinker has participated in tennis for 10-13 years while Stevens participated for three years.  Both Rinker and Stevens were inspired by family members to join tennis. Rinker was inspired by her mom and Stevens was inspired by her sister. 

“My older sister because she is a sophomore in college, and she was number one in her senior year of high school,” Stevens said. 

Competing against a teammate was considered stressful by both Rinker and Stevens. 

“It was very stressful and was awkward because it is your teammate and you want her to do well since she is a good player but at the same time you want to win which can be very difficult,” Rinker said. 

“It was difficult because it was hard to hit winners and cheer for yourself without being selfish of Rinker and her feelings,” Stevens said. 

The tennis team accomplished what they hoped for, which was to make it to Districts. 

Stevens believes competing against Rinker gave her confidence for the future. 

“It helped my personal game because I grew as a player and got better by playing her.  I also grew a lot of confidence,” Stevens said. 

Rinker and Stevens have similar opinions on the advice they would give to future Lions’ tennis players. 

“To put your mind to it and to keep up the hard work because it eventually pays off,” Stevens said. 

“Each point matters so play your heart out. Whenever you are on the court, put your mind to it and try to do your best. Be polite and have fun as well,” Rinker said. 

Rinker is appreciative of the win against Stevens but feels for her as a fellow tennis player and person. 

“She is a great player and I love her. We are both very competitive and both will try our hardest to win. I  feel bad for my teammate, but she is still young and I hope she can go far,” Rinker said. 

Capturing the District VI Girls’ tennis title is important to Rinker.

“All of that stress that I put on myself through the four years of high school tennis is finally relieved and accomplished,” Rinker said.