Keeping watch over student news at East Leyden High School

The Eagle's Eye

Minkov aims for third straight trip to state

Peter Skylakos

Peter Skylakos

Nataliya Grygorash, Reporter

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Finding something that you love can be really tough for some people, but junior Jessica Minkov was lucky enough to find it early and stick with it. Her commitment to tennis has led her to the state tournament twice, and she’s made improvements in her game.

According to varsity tennis coach Mr. Bob Smith, “Jessica went to the conference meet and she also went to state for the first two years. She plays quite a bit up at Highland Park Indoor Club, takes private lessons all year round. She played in USTA, United States Tennis Association, tournament this summer.”

Smith has already noticed the benefit of the extra work: “Jessica plays much better this year. She had worked on her forehand, which was one of her weaknesses last year. She is still working on her foot work, but she seems to be improving all the time.”

Minkov said, “I am really prepared for this season. I practiced all of the summer. I went to a camp this summer, and I trained there. During that camp we practice matches and drills.”

“It’s great,” she said of being back with her Leyden team and an upperclass contributor. “I love it. My team is really supportive. It is an honor to play on the varsity team. It’s really fun.”

And though she’s already “planning on continuing playing tennis after high school,” her goals are more focused on this year and what she’s learned in past Leyden seasons.

“For high school season, I qualified for state for my freshman and sophomore year, which was a great. It was cool to play at such a high level,” Minkov said before noting a part of her game that needs work:“I take losses really roughly especially if the match is really close. It puts me down sometimes.”

Fortunately, that’s one area where club play helped. “For the outside school tournament, it’s called USTA. I won some level 5 tournaments,” she shared. “I definitely got stronger mentally, and I can come back stronger in matches after a set or two.”

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Keeping watch over student news at East Leyden High School
Minkov aims for third straight trip to state