Girls tennis serves up the community for a good cause

Team volunteers at Glencoe Gardens

Girls Tennis players at the Glencoe Community Garden    | Schroeder

Girls Tennis players at the Glencoe Community Garden | Schroeder

Lexi Shoup

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Back in August, the New Trier girls varsity tennis team volunteered at the Glencoe Community Gardens. Back in August, the New Trier girls varsity tennis team volunteered at the Glencoe Community Gardens.

The girls performed a variety of tasks from harvesting, mulching, and composting plants to hammering and sawing to create planters.

The players divided into teams and each team worked on a different project to help out around the garden.

According to senior captain Amia Ross, “some of us were harvesting plants like leaves, peppers, and squash, and some of us were composting.

The Glencoe Community Gardens get a lot of their scraps for compost from locals and local businesses like True Juice so we got some scraps like watermelon rinds and lemon peels and we smashed them and then put some wood chips on top.”

The players also worked together to build and harvest, according to senior Caroline Bercu, “We harvested a lot of crops that went to local shelters. And we built flower beds with nails and wood.”

According to assistant coach Kerry Hall, the Glencoe Gardens were an easy choice, “we knew the people in charge of it which helped and the players thought it would be a good choice, they were excited about it.”

The Glencoe Gardens harvest a large amount of food each year to donate to people living outside the North Shore.

The aspect of service is important to the coaches. According to Hall, “We like to try to do a service project every year if we can. We’ve done various things over the years. As a varsity squad it’s bonding which is nice but it’s also giving back and that’s one of our philosophies as a program.”

Hall values service for two reasons, “I think it’s very important because it helps them feel good about giving back and we can as coaches help organize it and it’s an important thing to do when you live on the North Shore. And I think a secondary benefit is that they’re bonding and enjoying each other’s company.”

Not only did the girls get to give back to their communities, but they also had the opportunity to bond as a team.

Ross agreed when it came to the importance of the service project, “It was dual team bonding, dual service, it’s always good for us to give back to our community. The coaches always like when we do service, give back, and it was fun with the team to be there with everyone.”

Team activities are really important to get players comfortable both around each other and around their coaches. According to Hall, “We do team building all the time but on or near the courts. Or we have a carb dinner maybe 4 or 5 times a year called a “pump up”. It’s usually after practice.

As for the season so far, Hall said, “It’s going wonderfully mostly because the players are good people and they get along with each other and they work hard and they’re fun to be around.

And we have great leadership from our seniors and our captains and some young talent.”

He added that how they do at state is not always the best way to determine how successful the season is, “Because our sectional is so strong when we qualify for state it’ll be very hard for us to get our full team through which is too bad because we’re one of the top teams in the state and it’s a system we have to live with and adjust to.”

New Trier has to compete with some of their hardest competition just to qualify for state.

Finally he added, “So I’m not looking at that as the ultimate measure, that might be just four players that play for us at state and our squad is 23, so it’s fun to win and we do lots of that but the other aspects are harder to measure but more rewarding.”

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