Sports

Swampscott girls tennis ready for another run

Last year Swampscott (17-3) went to the Division 3 North final, where it was knocked off by eventual state champion Lynnfield. This year the Big Blue returns all of its starting players.
Senior captain and No. 1 singles player Anna Raptunovich and junior Vivian Gere, No. 2 singles, are back. Senior captain Veronica Pyatigorskaya – who has one loss in her high school career – is also back at singles, along with the doubles players, Michelle Shnayder, captain Anya Peterson and junior Sara Cunningham.
Gere went 25-0 last season. Pyatigorskaya has one loss in her high school career.
?I have been working as hard as I can, taking lessons outside of the team practices.” Raptunovich said. “Especially this year, my last year, we want to go as far as possible.
?In order for us to be successful this year, one of the other big things, I?d have to say is teamwork. I?m captain this year, so I have to set a good example for everyone, be a good role model, practice hard and play hard.”
Gere said she can?t wait to get going this season after ending the season with that playoff loss.
?Personally, I had a great season last year,” she said. “(But) we lost to Lynnfield, so certainly we want to do more this year. We have so many great tennis players on our team and our coaches are great. This could be an amazing year.”
Big Blue coach Nina Rogers deflected the credit from her to the players she?s had over her seven years with the program, including the last four as head coach during which her teams are 60-17.
?My seniors have been great since they?ve been here,” Rogers said. “You could not ask for a better group. (Raptunovich) went 13-0 in the (Northeastern Conference) at No. 1 singles, and 15-3 overall. It trickles down. We have outstanding players in each spot.”
Swampscott?s season starts April 2, hosting Masconomet. Home matches are at 4 p.m. at the Ralph B. Earle tennis courts on Forest Avenue.?The girls are obviously very talented,” Rogers said. “But what separates them is how hard they work to be successful. Our first day (Monday) was very exciting. I am really looking forward to this season.”

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