June 22nd, 2012

Elementary Excellence: Holy Family Tennis

Sarah Newell

CSN Staff Writer

Elementary Excellence: Holy Family Tennis
photo courtesy of Jody Fitzpatrick

Eagles fly on court in Louisville competition

The following feature is a part of a weekly series called "Elementary Excellence" - a set of profiles that will spotlight Louisville area Catholic elementary schools and its athletic programs, teams, traditions and excellence in all aspects of sports. Do you want your school to be featured? Send us your recommendation to editor@catholicsportsnet.com.

Tennis has created quite a racquet of excitement lately around the Holy Family Parish School in New Albany, Indiana.

Just ask Athletic Director Jody Fitzpatrick about it.

“We’ve had a tennis team in the past, but this is the first year we went to Louisville to compete in the 2012 CSAA Championships,” said Fitzpatrick. “John Boesing leads the tennis effort at our school. He has a tennis background from playing at Providence High School and then IU Southeast.”

The school had 13 boys and 30 girls play throughout the season, in addition to other Southern Indiana students who participated with Boesing.

“We took the girls team to the Louisville tournament this summer because the boys play in the fall,” said Fitzpatrick. “Our fifth and sixth grade group came in second place” (behind St. Patrick and in front of Holy Spirit),” said Fitzpatrick. “We had three girls play in the seventh and eighth grade division (Mary Ann Fitzpatrick, Danielle Wethington and Natalie Jacoby) and five girls play in the fifth and sixth grade division (Isabel Coe, Maddie Wilcox, Abby Glotzbach, Courtney Glotzbach, and Heather Wethington).”

Fitzpatrick sees tennis has a great opportunity for the student athletes to learn a new sport and compete.

“The highlight for me is to see the kids improve,” said Fitzpatrick. “In the last two years, I’ve seen some of those girls start as beginners and improve their skills. John encourages the kids to play in USTA tournaments for experience. Some of the kids may get beat 6-0 6-0, but tennis has brought an interest to kids who have never played before. Kids will come out not even owning a racquet and then start to learn the game.”

Fitzpatrick said that Boesing encourages kids to start playing and get in the game at all levels of competition.

“He splits up the team from beginners to the more competitive with matches and exhibition matches,” said Fitzpatrick. “We start at the fifth grade level for play, but we’ve had a few younger ones come to learn and play as well.”

Fitzpatrick said that she likes what tennis offers to Holy Family.

“I played sports in grade school and high school, but I’ve never played tennis. Yet, my kids wanted to try it. Tennis allows students who may not be the most athletic in other sports be a part of a team and learn individually. We’ve had kids who haven’t found a niche in another sport be inspired to keep getting better in tennis,” said Fitzpatrick.

According to Ftizpatrick, who said she enjoyed watching her tennis team compete in Louisville’s competition, says she hopes to continue bringing her student athletes over the river for matches.

Said Fitzpatrick: “Holy Family competed in cross country and golf in Louisville’s CSAA Championships this past year, as well as tennis. We would like to continue working with the Louisville program. We really enjoyed it.”


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