Sydney Schuler scored a season-opening win at no. 3 singles for Woodstock Academy against Montville. Photo by Keith Atchinson.

It was a long time in coming, but, the Woodstock Academy girls’ tennis team finally got to play a match this past week.
The Centaurs took to the court April 23 against Montville and captured a 6-1 win in their season opener.
First-year head coach Keith Atchinson admitted his team was getting a bit antsy after having practiced against one another for so long.
“It’s been a long preseason with the wind, rain and snow. We’ve had two league matches postponed and two other schools couldn’t get their teams together but we’re happy to be into the season now. We certainly can’t say we didn’t have time to prepare,” Atchinson said.
That preparation apparently paid off against the Indians (0-2, 0-2 ECC Division 2) who were playing in just their second match of the season.
Junior Addy Smith, the No. 1 singles player for the Centaurs, scored a straight set, 6-0, 6-2 win over Montville’s Sydney Kolz.
Jackie Trudeau, Sydney Schuler and Alexa Fernandez also scored straight set victories in singles play.
Trudeau was the only one among the three to even lose a game in a set and that type of dominant singles performances will be a help this season.
“I think so. Our strength this year is our depth. We have six to seven players who really could play anywhere in the lineup. I’m hoping we can use that to our advantage as we get into the season,” Atchinson said.
The Centaurs also took the two doubles matches that they played.
Ellie Bishop-Klee and Logan Reynolds downed Angie Bunay and Molly Chaney 6-0, 6-1 and the second Centaurs singles team of Morgan Bentley and Stella Atchinson were 6-1, 6-3 winners over Linda Ru and Allyson Boyer.
The Centaurs did not field a third doubles team and had to forfeit the match.
“We only have 11 girls on the varsity team and with 10 spots in a match lineup we don’t have room for players to miss matches. This is where commitment to your team plays a big role. We had a couple of girls decide that going away on April break was more important than the team so we had to deal with that for Friday’s match. But that’s also going to impact next week’s matches too with the quarantine rules in place.  We’ll do the best we can and hope that our depth gets us through,” Atchinson said.
Woodstock Academy is scheduled to play three matches this week against Stonington, St. Bernard and Lyman Memorial.
And Atchinson hopes the season-opening win will help a little with confidence and experience for those upcoming matches.
“I’m very happy, of course, with the win. I thought all of the girls stayed focused despite the scores not being real close. We talked about working on weaknesses they have and trying to strengthen them during match play pressure. I thought they did awesome with it,” he said.
Mark Allard
Director of Sports Information
The Woodstock Academy


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