Senior Spotlight: C.J. Hunter

Lindsay Headshotby Lindsay Wright
Sports Editor


Senior C.J. Hunter has demonstrated many qualities as one of the captains on the girls tennis team that make her stand out amongst her fellow players.

Tom-Tom (TT): How long have you been playing tennis?
C.J.: I started playing tennis my sophomore year, so this is only my third year of tennis.

TT: How did you get interested in the sport?
C.J.: I became interested in playing tennis after I quit volleyball and one of my friends suggested that I might like to play tennis instead. Turns out they were right!

TT: Are you a singles or doubles player?
C.J.: I consider myself both a singles and doubles player, and I have played both while on the Lemont tennis team. Currently I am first doubles with my partner, Melissa Smith.

TT: What are your strategies you utilize in match play?
C.J.: During match play, I tend to be an offensive player, so I utilize a lot of my power and like to move my opponents around the court.

TT: What were some goals you had at the beginning of the season? Did you achieve your goals?
C.J.: My goals for the season were to win conference for the 10th year in a row (which we did, Yay!) improve my own tennis skills, and make it to state.

TT: What was your conference record?
C.J.: Our conference record is 5-1.

TT: Do you hope to go on to state?
C.J.: Both Melissa and I are extremely determined to make it to state this year. It’s really tough but we’re ready for the challenge.

TT: What responsibilities do you have as a captain on the team? How do you display leadership on the team?
C.J.: As a captain, it is important that I provide a good example for the other girls to be a good student, athlete, and specifically a hard-working tennis player. Captains are in charge of leading stretches, conditioning, and choosing activities to help improve the tennis team as a whole, as well as the individual players.

TT: How is the team dynamic? Even though you don’t play all together, how do you come together as a team and support each other?
C.J.: Tennis is seen as an individual or partner sport, but it is very important that a team comes together to support one another. I can honestly say that team support has gotten me through some tough matches, as well as encouraged me to do better. Moral support is an important part of being a Lemont tennis player.

TT: What was your biggest challenge this season?
C.J.: We lost 6 out of our 8 varsity starters last year, so the biggest challenge was definitely rebuilding our strength at the varsity level. It was tough, but everything clearly paid off.

At sectionals on Friday, Oct. 17, C.J. and her doubles partner Melissa won their first match against Bolingbrook (6-3, 6-2) and then lost to Hinsdale Central (0-6, 0-6) in their state qualifying match.

Each team member went out with the ambition to advance to state but the odds were not in their favor. Although no players advanced to state, they were able to end their year as conference and regional champions with an appearance at sectionals.

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