Sophomore Yvonne Shannon places seventh in State tennis tournament


After a successful season, sophomore Yvonne Shannon placed in seventh place in the State tournament. Though she didn’t place first this year, Shannon has big expectations for her future.

As the fall sports season wraps up, North’s girls tennis team ends with a record of 6-6, sending one player to State.
“I’m very proud of our 6-6 record. Especially since we played our first three matches without three of our varsity players,” said head coach Ron Lefcourt.
After not playing many matches last season due to COVID-19, the team began working hard to improve their skills but also focused on mentally becoming a stronger team.
“When preparing for matches we usually just hype each other up, making sure we all step on the court with confidence is key to our teams success,” said sophomore Yvonne Shannon.
The team still has lots of room to grow, but they are already seeing success. Junior Diana Khariton and senior Sanjana Panwar won a medal in the District Doubles Championship, beating a team from Hannibal. They eventually lost to a team from Parkway Central.
“The District Tournament is the beginning rounds of the State Tournament,” said Lefcourt. “There is a Team District and an Individual District. The school that wins the Team District moves on to Sectionals…The top two finishers in the doubles and singles tournaments become state qualifiers and move on to the State Tournament in Springfield.”
Shannon won the District Singles Championship, which qualified her to advance to State where she placed seventh.
“Seventh place is good, but it’s not great,” said Shannon. “Next year, I plan to take first place and take our whole team to state instead of me just going individually.”
By the end of the tournament, Shannon finished with 3 wins out of 5 games played, and she placed the highest of any other girl from North in 16 years.
“My goals were really just to be someone that the team could depend on and obviously take [North] to State. I think I’m the first person [since] 2006 to get that far in State, so I’m glad I was able to make my school proud,” said Shannon.
Shannon also set the doubles team season record of 18-1 with sophomore Emily Koo.
“Next season should be exciting. Our number one and two [are] Yvonne Shannon and Emily Koo,” said Lefcourt. “[I’m also excited for] freshman Antara Panwar and juniors Diana Khariton and Hannah Chen. Our focus is always on improving all areas of our play. That includes working on improving one’s strokes as well as working on strategy and mental preparedness.”