Excerpt from Bristol Press – April 6, 2016
Coach: Beth Hines (1st year)
Last season: 12-4, lost in second round of NVL tournament
Probable starters: Natasha Kemps (jr.), Victoria Kilbourne (so., 2015 All-Press Team), Katie Pauloz (so.), Olivia Kilbourne (sr. capt.), Mariah Fiscella (jr.), Sophia Penisse (jr.), Margaret Carpenter (sr. capt.), Brianna Cheng (sr. capt.), Caroline Badal (so.), Elizabeth Etter (so.), Nadia Skarba (jr.)
Key reserves: Grace Carey (jr.), Alexia Chrzanowski (jr.), Jordan Farrell (sr.), Isabella Russo (sr.), Nicole Wroblewski (so.), Victoria DiPinto (so.), Madison Shea (jr.)
Falcons’ outlook: St. Paul was only a couple of wins behind Bristol Central last season for the top team in Bristol. Now, with a new coach at the helm, the Falcons are aiming high.
“I believe we are a strong contender in the NVL conference,” Coach Hines said. “The team’s goals are to get better every day and qualify for the conference and state tournaments.”
The St. Paul squad will be led by senior captains Brianna Cheng, Margaret Carpenter and Olivia Kilbourne and sophomore Victoria Kilbourne. The senior captains will provide veteran leadership along with their play, while Victoria Kilbourne will lead the way on the court after going undefeated last season.
“Our number one and two singles players have been undefeated in previous years,” Hines said. “Both are strong players having played tennis in USTA tournaments for several years.”
NVL outlook: According to Hines, the Falcons are well-positioned to make a run at the Naugatuck Valley League championship this season, after coming up just short last year. They will be looking to bounce back, especially against the teams that dealt them losses last season.
“We are among the teams to beat for sure,” Hines said. “The teams we are looking to avenge losses to last year include Watertown, Woodland, Sacred Heart, Naugatuck and Wolcott.”