Claudia Althans (`17) uses her overhead at the state tournament.
Claudia Althans (`17) made a headline appearance as she is one of the youngest players to advance to the district tournament in school history. Girls head tennis coach Mrs. Cyndi Smith said, “Claudia showed great potential.” Now two years later, Smith not only sees her as a promising high school player but as a top prospect for colleges.
Althans finished the tennis season with a third place medal at the state tournament. This beat out her fourth place finish last year. To put this in perspective, only 16 individual players make it to the state tournament. This leaves little room for error, but Althans fought hard to finish in the top three.
The challenges Althans faced during the regular season included playing a two time state champion from Hathaway Brown and a senior from Western Reserve Academy who according to Althans was “already committed to play tennis for the Naval Academy.” The challenging regular season prepared Althans for the tough competition she would face at the state tournament.
As a visibly talented athlete, Althans is highly regarded by her coaches. Smith said she is “hardworking, humble, mentally tough, and tenacious.” Smith explained that these kind words demonstrate “just how special Claudia is not only as an athlete but also as a person.”
Coach Smith and my personal coach have led me to be the tennis player I am today and my parents are my biggest supporters.
Althans thanks many people for her early success. She said, “I honestly attribute my success to my coaches and parents. Both Coach Smith and my personal coach have led me to be the tennis player I am today and my parents are my biggest supporters. They love watching me play, and they don’t care whether I win or lose. They want me to have fun.”
Smith plans on preparing and challenging Althans to win first place at the state tournament in her senior year. To prepare Althans, Smith said, “Claudia has a large repertoire of shots and still has room to improve her counterattack.”
Claudia Althans (`17) celebrates a third place finish at states with her coaches.