The tennis team has many high expectations for their upcoming season, and their coach has fully prepared the student athletes for success this year.
“This season the expectations are quite high for both boys and girls, but more so the girls. Not to take anything away from the boys, but the girls are very strong. The top 5 all train regularly and have a very good chance of making it past districts. The boys team lost a lot of players last year, so the team is made up of a new group of players. So if not this year, the following seasons should be better,” said Mr. Rydborn, the ILS tennis head coach.
Mr. Rydborn teaches the Health Science STEAM track to freshmen and sophomores, and Anatomy and Physiology to seniors. He has been the ILS tennis coach for three years now, and had previously coached tennis for 15 years in Australia, England, Sweden, and the US.
Unfortunately, ILS does not have tennis courts. Therefore, the team practices and has their matches at Crandon on Key Biscayne. Mr. Rydborn encourages all students to come out and watch our amazing tennis team.
“Tennis as a professional sport is an individual sport, but at the high school level and collegiate level it’s more of a team sport. In order to win, you have to win 4 of your 7 matches (5 singles, 2 doubles). So the team dynamic almost develops naturally as everyone is there watching each other, helping from the sidelines and heavily invested in each others results. Some of them will play both singles and doubles and thats where you see a lot of the team relationship develop,” he said.
Jose Lopez de Ayala, the only senior on the boys team, has a great chance to prove himself in the district, according to Mr. Rydborn.
Seniors Ariana Perez and Gabi Caputo have been on the tennis team since their freshmen year. Because of their hard work and dedication to the team, they are one of the many reasons the girls team are who they are.
“They will be seeing a lot of doubles due to their experience throughout the past seasons. So look forward to seeing them play for one more season, even if it may be bitter sweet,” Mr. Rydborn.
Tryouts for the team were a multi-stage process. Technically, there are two stages to tryout, and after making it on the team, you will compete for a place on the starting team.
During the first stage, everyone hits with each other. In the second stage, Mr. Rydborn will invite those back who he thinks would have a chance to make the team for another tryout, and then two or three players will join the tennis squad. After this, those who were chosen to be on the team, will compete for a place on the starting team.
One of the most exciting parts of the 2020 for Coach Rydborn is the potential success of the team.
Coach Rydborn is looking forward to “see how far the girls can go,” he said. “I’ve been giving them a lot of praise around school to others, so I’m hoping they can back that up. And for two of them its their last season with La Salle. They have been on the team since freshman, so I’m hoping we can finish with a season that they can remember.”
The schedule for the tennis team can be found on the ILS school calendar, and the meets are always posted on the Immaculata-La Salle Instagram, and any other social media account. The games are entertaining and spectator friendly.