PDS Girls Varsity Tennis Completes Undefeated Season

The PDS Varsity Girls Tennis team experienced an incredible journey this fall, facing 10 opposing teams and completing an UNDEFEATED season with a record of 10-0! The players made the most of an unpredictable season by focusing on each match and making the most of every opportunity to play. With no post-season play due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Panthers treated each match like it was their last, competing at the highest level while also savoring every precious moment with each other. 

Head Coach Chris Rosensteel, in his first season as PDS Girls Varsity Tennis Head Coach, was especially proud of the effort the girls brought each day and the community they created along the way.

"Our team's success this year can be best attributed to our unmatched depth accompanied by strong senior leadership. We were fortunate to have competitive tennis players that pushed each other in practice. Productive and effective preparation resulted in our girls competing confidently in match play. We had a big team and many different personalities, and the girls did a great job coming together for the success of the team in each practice and match," he stated.

Gabby Namouni '21

Three dedicated seniors led the team: Hannah Van Dusen ‘21, Hayden Masia ‘21 and Gabby Namouni ‘21. During their Senior Day Ceremony, which was covered in a previous news post, Coach Rosensteel praised the trio for helping create such a strong team culture.

"This group of seniors has taken on the task of being leaders for our team during the most challenging season we've ever experienced. From our very first preseason practices in August through today, they have created a positive, inclusive experience for all of their teammates. In spite of the challenges and adversity faced this season, this group has been resourceful and resilient,” Coach Rosensteel observed.

PDS Girls Tennis Seniors and families on Senior Day

Van Dusen and Masia, who played first doubles this season after winning the State Prep B Championship in 2019, echoed this sentiment during an interview with Bill Alden from Town Topics. Masia noted, “The team as a group is very close which I think helps bring each other up... You are not afraid to make mistakes because you know it’s not just your teammates, it is your actual friends there to help you regardless of grade.” 

Hayden Masia '21 and Hannah Van Dusen '21

One particularly exciting match was against Shawnee High School. In a battle of undefeated teams, PDS Girls Varsity Tennis won 4-1 in a series of tightly contested matches. Emmy Demorre ’24 gutted out a victory in first singles while the Panthers also took home the W in second singles, third singles and first doubles. Demorre, who is a freshman this year, has brought a positive presence to first singles with her strong power game and incredible serve. 

Neha Khandkar '23, who won both the Mercer County Tournament and Prep B Championship at third singles in 2019, was another strong contributor for the team. She was chosen as Panther Athlete of the Week after she defeated Stuart Country Day at first singles. Rosensteel told Alden that Neha’s success comes from her determination. “It is the way she focuses on every point and she doesn’t let things bother her. Every point, she is locked in and you can tell she puts pressure on you for the entire match.”

Neha Khandkar '23

Girls Tennis Full team Roster

Coaches: Varsity Head Coach Chris Rosensteel, Varsity Assistant Coach Jon Brown, JV Coaches Dede Webster '62 and Ferguson Reeves

Players (in alphabetical order): Josephine Baranski '23, Anushka Bhagavathula '23, Emmy Demorre '24, Eshaa Doshi '22, Ashlyn Du '24, Caroline Ewing '22, Jenny Fan '22, Ava Fong '23, Jenna Galla '23, Sahar Haris '23, Neha Khandkar '23, Anagha Konakanchi '24, Hayden Masia '21, Gabrielle Namouni '21, Lily Nyce '22, Hannah Park '23, Stella Ringblom '22, Genesis Rivera '22, Divya Sharma '22, Elizabeth Sun '23, Hannah Van Dusen '21, Satviki Vasireddy '23, Kristina Wang '24, Yufang Wang '22, Elaine Wu '23, Sophie Zhang '22, Amy Zhou '23, Emily Zhu '22

Match Results:

Hill School Win 9-0

Pennington School Win 4-1

Stuart Country Day Win 5-0

Hun School Win 3-2

Pennington School Win 4-1

Shawnee High School Win 4-1

Stuart Country Day Win 5-0

Hun School Win 4-1

South Brunswick High School Win 3-2

Newark Academy Win 4-1

Hillsborough High School Win 4-2

See our Flickr album for photo highlights from the 2020 Girls Tennis season

Photos (from top): Emmy Demorre '24, Gabby Namouni '21 serving, Senior Day collage with families, Hayden Masia '21 and Hannah Van Dusen '21 after winning a point, Neha Khandkar '23 with a two-hand backhand

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