A bittersweet ending: Seniors say farewell after undefeated season


Barrett Wong

Senior Maya Atassi prepares to volley an incoming serve from her opponent. The team beat Fremont 6–1 and secured an undefeated record.

Under the warm spring sun on their home court, the varsity girls tennis team couldn’t have asked for a better way to end the season — especially a season that the team originally didn’t expect to have. The number one ranked Los Altos team beat Fremont 6–1 yesterday to secure their undefeated 14–0 record, wrapping up this year’s abnormal season on a definite high note. 

“I’m really happy that the girls were able to get a season in,” head coach Hung Nguyen said. “Because of our preparation and the girls’ hard work, we were able to perform really well today.”

Prior to their match, underclassmen from the varsity tennis team lined up to commemorate the eight seniors who will be leaving the team this year. The heartfelt speeches, warm embraces and melancholy tears shed were all testaments to the close bonds the teammates shared with one another this season. 

Large tennis balls signed by the underclassmen were also given to each of the seniors as a memento of the friendships between players. Roses and thank you notes were also exchanged between seniors and head coach Nguyen as tokens of appreciation for helping them grow — both as players and as people — over the past four years.

“Most of the seniors have been a part of our program for all four years of high school,” Nguyen said. “They also acted as role models for the underclassmen, which, as a coach, made me really happy.” 

The Eagles dominated Fremont as thoroughly as they did three weeks ago. The Eagles were constantly in control during their singles and doubles matches, as they were eager to finish off the season strong. Despite dealing with many COVID-19 precautions and the uncertainty of even having a season, the players still chose to compete as hard as they possibly could.

“I’m grateful that our players never gave up and stuck with tennis even with COVID playing a major factor this season,” Nguyen said. 

Their undefeated streak can be attributed to both the team’s pre-season work and leadership, which helped players be ready for any upcoming competitions. 

“Our off-season cohort program helped prepare the girls to jump right into the season,” Nguyen said. “Also, our team captains Hannah Ghaffari and Maya Atassi keep the team as a whole close to one another. ”

“Everyone is really close on the team and we genuinely work together,” senior Arya Sastry said. “On the team, people want to see you win and they want to help you play the best that you can.” 

Even though the passion and energy the seniors bring to the team will be missed, this season has given the team confidence in their ability to perform in the future. Since there is no league movement this year due to COVID-19, the team will have to play in the lower El Camino division for one more year. Fortunately, this will give them the opportunity to take next season to further improve, in the hopes of moving up a division in the future. 

“This season is really going to propel us since we have tasted the success,” Nguyen said. “Aiming to move up to the De Anza [division] will really give the players the motivation to improve next season.”