Girls Tennis: Juliet Delapena

Zaara Syeda, Staff Writer

How long have you been playing tennis?

I have been playing tennis since I was young, but I did not take it as seriously when I was younger. I only started really taking it more seriously freshman year.

What position do you play?

I play in first singles.

What made you decide to join the team?

I decided since I had some prior experience with tennis, granted it wasn’t a lot of experience, but it was something that I thought the tennis team was something different and it was worth giving it a shot. 

Can you describe a moment that was memorable to you?

I think just being together with the team. The team being so nice has been a factor to why I’ve stayed on the tennis team. A memorable moment was when we got Starbucks this season before one of our matches. 

How do you prepare for a tennis match outside of school?

Outside of school I just try to eat well and hydrate, make sure I get my fill of potassium and listen to some music. I try to remember everything my coach taught me. 

What are your plans for tennis when the season ends?

When the season ends, I will continue to do tennis, just hit around on the courts until we have to move inside for the winter. For the spring, I do plan on helping out when I can with the boys’ season.

What particularly do you enjoy about tennis?

There’s just something about hitting the ball and just that rush of dopamine when you get a good shot, and just rallying with friends is always fun. 

What are some challenges of playing tennis?

It’s very much a mental game. It’s easy to get in your own head, so I’ve definitely had my struggle with beating myself up too much during matches, especially as a singles player because you don’t have a partner to support you like in doubles.

How do you feel about these last few upcoming matches?

I’m sad that the season is coming to an end, especially because this is my last tennis season competing at East. … I’m looking forward to them though.

What are you going to miss most about your high school tennis team?

Definitely the team and the coach because they’re a big part of the reason I stayed. Especially coach because he’s new and, well, when I joined as a freshman, it was his first time coaching at East. It was my first time playing tennis for East, so we kind of learned those experiences together in a way. And similar with all the other girls who joined as a freshman and played all four years. Definitely gonna miss them. 

What is some advice for anyone interested in tennis?

It is 100% worth a shot, and, if you plan on doing tennis, just be as Coach Dom says “coachable.” Listen to whatever he gives you whether it’s to fix technique, it’s game strategies, just be coachable.

Anything you’d like to add?

The “JV God” is a tennis term that me and my boyfriend use because we did a lot of tennis over quarantine, and he came from being fourth doubles on JV then he worked his way all the way up to being first doubles varsity his junior year. The JV God mindset is basically not giving up and always pushing to improve. Just that grit, that competition.