The official student media of Blue Valley Northwest High School


The official student media of Blue Valley Northwest High School


The official student media of Blue Valley Northwest High School


Girls tennis qualifies for state

The Girls Tennis Regionals results in sending 4 of the 6 girls to State
Rachel King
Doubles partners Saraphina Wambi (left) and her sister Maryam Wambi (right) took second place at tennis regionals.

The Huskies had multiple victories at tennis regionals Friday. Senior Saraphina Wambi and her sister, sophomore Maryam Wambi, took second place, and senior Tindra Lind and sophomore Cammie Peng taking sixth. These results secured both of the doubles teams spots at state. Sophomore Maddie Abel and Sophomore Ella Johnson both played singles, but fell short of qualifying for state. 

Assistant coach Stephanie Tsao explained that she felt all six of the girls put their best effort into their matches. 

“I think what the team did well at regionals was that they supported each other and they played the best that they could. They knew what they needed to do to get the wins at the end of the match to get to the next round,” Tsao said. “Everyone was very encouraging and really positive and uplifting.”

According to sophomore Maddie Abel, always being positive and trying to do your best throughout the match is essential for her to keep a good mentality.

“Always be positive. I try to do my best with the match. I [try] just keep the ball in play. I also take the coaches advice whenever they give feedback on what to do,” Abel said. 

 Similarly, Saraphina said she and her sister Maryam keep a good mentality by staying positive and laughing throughout their challenging matches. 

“A method for staying positive for both of us is just telling jokes to each other because oftentimes, it’s really easy to get in your head when you’re playing tennis. It is such a mental sport,” Saraphina said. “Being able to tell each other jokes is really important, especially playing doubles where your energy does transfer to your partner and vice versa.” 

She explained how a positive mindset was necessary since they were playing Shawnee Mission East High School, the team who won the state championship last year. 

“Just from the beginning, right from the get-go of the tournament, we knew that it was going to be tough,” Saraphina said.“We did have the hardest regional with [playing]  Shawnee Mission East who are state champions. They’re a very tough school.”

Despite having challenging competition, the Huskies came out successful enough to qualify for state. 

“Coming out with the win to qualify for state is really big. And so I’m just proud of the girls for having grown on or off the court as individuals and also as teammates,” Tsao said.  “[We have] gotten a lot closer and bonded [which helped us] get to this point.” 

Saraphina explained that as the day went on, their self esteem was boosted which led  to better results in matches. 

“As the day progressed, all the teams and all the players grew more confident, and I think we all had more confidence in our skills and more confidence in our abilities,” Saraphina said. “So we certainly played better as the day went on, and you can see that in the results of the matches.” 

Saraphina goes on to say the team spent the week before regionals focusing on things that would help them prepare for the matches. 

“We focused a lot on drilling and playing a lot of matches against each other and against the coaches, trying to get a lot of play and fine tune our skills and work on strategies going into regionals,” Saraphina said. 

The Huskies faced challenges with the weather and had a rain delay for a total of thirty minutes in the morning. Abel said she felt the weather helped her win a crucial point.

“I hit a slice and the wind affected it so it hit over the net and bounced on their side. They were swinging at it and [then] wind pushed it back,” Abel said.

Tsao explained that over the season the girls have bonded because of all the time they spent together at matches and practices, and said they had a memorable experience at regionals. 

“The girls in general [have become] really, really close especially because they spend so much time together and the energy was high there [and] everyone [was] in really good spirits,” Tsao said.

Saraphina expressed that these friendships not only affected the players off the court but also affected their success on the court. 

“I would say that a lot of it is communication. Whether that is on the court or off the court making sure that you have a good relationship,” Saraphina said. 

She went on to explain how her relationship with her sister translated to their doubles performance. 

“We’ve just tried to really have fun and do our best in the matches that we play. Because ultimately, these are some of our last moments getting to play together,” Saraphina said. “So just having fun with it. And being competitive has been the most important thing for us.” 

According to Tsao, Saraphina has made a positive impact on the team this year. 

“Saraphina is very positive and shows leadership on and off the field on and off the court and that is what helps her carry the team and support the teammates and pick everyone up,” Tsao said. “She motivates the players and gets us into the right mindset to play these important matches, knowing that this is very much a team sport.”

With the last week of the season, the Huskies are ending on a high note making it to state. 

“I think that ultimately, the Northwest team had a good showing at regionals, we showed up and ready to play and we were the first people there in the morning and we were the last people to leave that night,” Saraphina said. “I think that just shows a testament to the coaches and the rest of the girls just kind of our dedication to the game and that our dedication to playing well,”.

Similarly, Tsao said she is also proud of how the girls performed at regionals.

“As [a] coach, I’m proud of the girls for how far along they’ve come since the beginning of the season. And you know, with us being in the toughest region in the state, it’s always a battle every season to see who can qualify for state,” Tsao said.a

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About the Contributors
Bridget Hamlin
Bridget Hamlin, Social Media Editor
Bridget is a junior and the Social Media Editor of BVNWnews. This is her second year on staff. Outside of newspaper, Bridget is involved in tennis, AVID, NEHS and plans to be a part of NHS this year. Bridget enjoys spending time with friends and family and traveling in her free time. Bridget is excited to take on the roll of Social Media Editor this year. 
Sara Scheibel
Sara Scheibel, Writer
Sara Scheibel is a junior and writer for “The Express”. This is her first year on staff. Sara is involved in girls tennis, BVNW Ambassadors, and AVID. Outside of school, Sara loves to spend time with friends and family.
Rachel King
Rachel King, Photographer
Rachel is a junior and a photographer for “The Express”. This year is her second year on staff. Outside of the newspaper Rachel plays soccer for the school. In her free time she enjoys hanging out with friends, listening to music, and playing soccer. Rachel is excited to be a part of “The Express” and looks forward to the year.

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