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Earlier this year, the Public Schools Athletic League (PSAL) announced that the girls tennis season would be moved from the spring to the fall in order to avoid that of the boys tennis team. As reported by SI Live, tennis commissioner Janet Miles commented, “the girls season is moving to the fall so we will have less conflicts with the boys season for court space.” This move also provides for more favorable weather conditions during play as well as a schedule aligned with the NYSPHSAA State Championships.
The change was met with mixed reactions among members of Townsend Harris’ girls tennis team, which is led by senior captains Cerlina Lin, Ping Tseng, and Cindy Wu.
Ping, who welcomed the switch, said “I like the change because the team was able to start practicing over the summer.”
Cerlina explained the difficulties of practice time in the spring. “It’s hard to get practice time for the tennis team because Mother Nature likes to play weather games. Even a little rain can completely throw us off because the courts get slippery, and the last thing we want is an injury.”
Junior Liana Weitzman agreed, stating that she prefers the fall weather for tennis. According to Liana, “The (fall) weather is better for playing because it’s cooler and doesn’t rain as much, but in the spring it’s very hot and humid.”
There are other drawbacks as well. Fall is not only the tennis season, but also the start of the school year and college application season. Two seniors have decided not to continue playing tennis to focus on their applications. After school college electives will also impact the team as some players will miss practices and matches to attend class. Cerlina pointed out, “We need exactly seven players [at a match] or else we have to forfeit.” With a small team comprised of mostly seniors, the team will look to underclassmen to step up this season.