MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. -- Mindy Hugo is the senior leader on a Mount Vernon girls tennis team that is working hard toward the opening of the fall outdoor season that begins on September 7 with a match against local rival Tuckahoe.
Hugo, who was a conference qualifier last fall and teaches tennis to youngsters and seniors as part of a Mount Vernon tennis program, hopes she and her teammates can enjoy the season while growing as players.
"I have been playing at Mount Vernon since seventh grade, so I really enjoy being part of the team," Hugo said. "We have a good group of girls and Coach (Frank Naccarato) has us working on strategy and making good shots."
Naccarato, in his third year as the girls coach, said his team has a mix of young talent and athleticism that can lead to good on court results.
"Mount Vernon is not a tennis power but we play in a competitive league and we try to keep it fun while we learn the game," Naccarato said. "We had a tryout period last spring and got to know some of the girls."
One of Naccarato's spring finds is sophomore Katasah Jarvis, who has exhibited the ability to get to shots all over the court.
"I am kind of small but I think I can get to most of the court and I enjoy learning more with each practice," Jarvis said. "I'm learning a lot from Mindy. She is a big hitter who hits the ball deep all over. Tennis is fun for me, so it helps when school is going to have something fun to do."
Hugo, who is tall and possesses good ground strokes and a strong serve, hopes to help her younger teammates progress.
"I enjoy teaching tennis to young kids and as a leader i try to help whenever I can," she said. "We're looking forward to starting the matches next week."
The other Mount Vernon Lady Knights players are Kayla Brown, Sophia Ruiz, Susanna Yu, Alexsandra Ondo, Kyazah David, Amery Jarrett, Tyesha Phillips, Antonia Thompson-Riley and Ashley Munroe.
"I'm a Mount Vernon guy, so being here and coaching tennis is a nice experience for me," Naccarato said. "The girls have been putting in the time and getting better each day."
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