Arendell Parrott makes it to second straight tennis championship match
Arendell Parrott may not have won the big prize, but the Patriots have shown their prowess throughout 2018.
For the second straight season, APA made it to the NCISAA championships and looking to bring home a title for the first time since 2011. Unfortunately, St. David’s picked up a 5-1 victory to derail the dreams. While Parrott has racked up an impressive record of 25-6 over the past two seasons, including 10-4 in 2018, the Warriors won their second consecutive title and have been 39-1 since 2017, including 21-0 this season.
Still, there were plenty of positives on the season, including seven 9-0 victories and only one loss to a team not named St. David’s. Patriots coach Brad Sauls said the team has done everything necessary to be a state power and he couldn’t be prouder of what APA has accomplished.
"This is a group of outstanding young ladies who want to do their best while working on the common goal of a state championship," Sauls said. "While we came up a little short, they did everything possible to come out on top."
APA is also in a position to flourish in the future, as the team only had three seniors on the team in Blythe Brantley, Anne Grayson Lindley and Arden Riddle. Brantley, who has played four years for APA, said she learned a lot about team concepts and chemistry during her time.
"When you're working in the offseason, you're playing more for yourself, but with a team you want everyone to succeed," Brantley said. "This was a great experience and I was able to build a lot of great friendships here."
Riddle, who has played with the Patriots since eighth grade, said the two runner-up seasons have been the best.
"Our past couple of years, we had gotten closer and closer," Riddle said. "Even though we didn't quite make it, this was an amazing year."
The senior leadership has been an essential part of the team’s success in 2018 according to freshman Erika Gorrin-Rivas.
"It was a lot of hard work and we've gone through a lot, but the seniors really helped out," Gorrin-Rivas said. "We had some great leaders and I really looked up to them."
The Patriots also had a big loss on the season with junior Reagan Perry sidelined due to injury. APA junior Allison Christiano said there’s plenty of optimism as the team looks to break through in 2019.
"I think this team has everything we need to win a championship with Reagan back," Christiano said. "We'll be losing a couple of great seniors, but I think we'll be able to piece everything together."