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Season Preview 2024

These are our best guesses for the season.  

Going into 2024, we have some big shoes to fill.  2023 was one of the best seasons in Sherwood Girls Tennis history:

  • A team record of 16-2

  • Great wins over tough squads from West Linn (4th at state), Sheldon (3rd at state) and Summit (5th at state in 5A)

  • League Championship (Dual meet and Tournament)

  • 3 singles and 2 doubles teams qualifying for state

  • 2nd place in the 14-team Roseburg tournament, which included Jesuit, LaSalle and all the best teams from outside Portland.

Fortunately for our 2024 outlook, a TON of our success came from the stellar play of our first-year varsity players.  To say that they stepped up last year is a massive understatement.  So we have a strong base for 2024.  But more on that later.  Let's step away from Sherwood and talk about our competition a bit.

High school tennis in 2023 was a massive anomaly.  Seniors typically make up about 40% of high school varsity teams.  For 2023, it was under 30%.  That was a lingering impact from Covid.  The 2020 season got canceled after 9 days, and the 2021 season was shortened to only 6 weeks with no state tournament.  So a ton of players from the class of 2023 never really got started in tennis.  And that made a big gap among teams way bigger.  Schools that have lots of tennis club members or teams that have strong community programs were still pretty strong.  Teams where the only tennis out there is high school tennis were very heavily impacted.

What does that mean?  It means that all tennis in Oregon in 2024 will be more competitive, and that's awesome.  It will be nice to see more parity around the state.

For our league, we'll definitely see the impacts as well with the top 3 teams graduating lots more seniors than the 4 who were harder hit by the Covid era.  Just looking at graduations, in order of 2023 league finish):

  • Sherwood:  3 graduates, including Morgan (2x league singles champion and Emma (2x state qualifier)

  • McMinnville:  5 graduates from their district line-up, including a state qualifier

  • Glencoe:  9 graduates, including a state-qualifying doubles team


  • Century:  4 graduates, but their tough 1/2/3 singles line-up is still intact

  • Forest Grove:  3 graduates

  • Newberg:  3 graduates, but they had 8 varsity players who were only freshmen or sophomores

  • Liberty:  1 graduate, and 6 varsity players who were only freshmen or sophomores

So, what does the season look like for Sherwood?  Our two scheduled non-league matches are Centennial and West Linn.  Both of those teams are in rebuilding mode, but West Linn always rebuilds well and our 5-3 win over them last year included two 1-6, 1-6 losses.  We are excited to go to the Roseburg tournament again (April 19 & 20) and expect great competition there again.  In our conference, most teams will be tougher, but I think most of the younger teams are building up to challenge us more in 2025 than this year.  So, as usual, it will probably be a battle with McMinnville for the league title.  They had a few more graduates than us, but you can always expect them to be tough.  They work hard, have a solid returning core line-up, usually a high-level freshman or two and some players who improve more than most.

So, it may be possible to improve on last year's 16-2 record, but it's going to take hard work in practice to prepare for the tough teams.


As for us, I don't like to make too many predictions about individual players or our lineup.  We do know that competition for the varsity spots will be tough again.   We have a good mix of:

  • Returning varsity players

  • 2023 JV players who stepped up a few times or a ton of times (with a 26-3 combined record in varsity matches)

  • Freshmen who have been putting in lots of work for the last few years

  • And most of the last few years have included a surprise or two (maybe a push up from the 2023 JV2 squad, a transfer)

For our JV and JV2 teams, we expect strong performances as well.  Our JV will be put to more of a test this year with other programs improving.  For our JV2 team, we are hoping to see lots of new faces ready to learn the game and love it.

And one more very hopeful statement - but no promises.  That thing called El Nino that you probably heard about in your middle school science class is in effect.  Traditionally, El Nino years tend to have drier weather in March and April in Oregon.  So, the brutally wet weather we've had the last two seasons may take a break this year.  Fingers crossed!

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