Share This Page

WPIAL tennis champ Frey seeking elusive PIAA championship

| Sunday, Aug. 18, 2013, 10:45 p.m.
Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
Mt. Lebanon's Callie Frey hugs Upper St. Clair's Megan Adamo after their WPIAL Class AAA championship match on Friday, Sept. 21, 2012, at North Allegheny. Frey won, 6-2, 6-0.

The reigning WPIAL Class AAA girls tennis champion believes she's even better this season. It remains to be seen if the same can be said for the teams that are defending their WPIAL titles.

The high school season begins Monday, and Mt. Lebanon's Callie Frey is back for her senior year. Frey, who holds a No. 6 ranking in the USTA's Middle States region for 18 singles, moved her training to Alpha Tennis & Fitness in Harmar last year.

The repeated drives from the South Hills have been worth it. Frey said that training there “definitely” has made her a better player.

“There are a lot of better hitters there and higher-level guys who hit there and who hit hard,” Frey said. “So within the past year, my ranking's gone up, and I've started winning more, and I've improved from there.”

The lone room for improvement when it comes to singles performance at the high-school level would be a PIAA championship. Frey has three PIAA silver medals: one in singles last year and in doubles from 2010 and '11 with partner Annie Baich.

In getting out of the WPIAL tournament, Frey could to have to face some experienced players. Thirteen of the 15 WPIAL Class AAA tournament qualifiers from last year were underclassmen.

Some of the projected top players, however, have elected not to play this season. Defending WPIAL and PIAA Class AAA team champion Peters Township, for example, is without juniors Sarah Komer and Abby Cummings, who combined to win the WPIAL and PIAA doubles championships last season.

Komer is playing volleyball, and Cummings elected to focus on her tournament schedule, Indians coach Brandt Bowman said. Senior Stephanie Smith, who teamed with Komer to win the WPIAL and PIAA doubles championships two years ago, also did not come out for the team this year.

“If we had all the girls who still should be playing, we'd probably have the best team we've ever had,” said Bowman, who has guided the Indians to four of the past seven PIAA Class AAA team championships.

Luckily for Bowman and Peters Township, there is another Komer sister. Freshman Anna Komer joins sophomore Chloe Grzyb as players who would make a strong first singles option. Junior Carlye Campagna (third singles) and sophomore Megan Hixon and junior Jen Holcombe (first doubles) also were in the lineup for the start of the season, although Bowman said the order could change.

As many as 10 players could challenge for duty at second doubles for Peters Township.

“Our strength has always been our depth,” Bowman said.

That also is often true of defending Class AA team champion Quaker Valley, which has won six of the past nine WPIAL Class AA titles. If the Quakers repeat this season, though, they'll have to do it without reigning WPIAL singles champion Spencer Caravaggio, who is at Duquesne University.

“Last year we were star-driven by Spencer Caravaggio with a good supporting cast,” coach Christi Hays said. “This year we are an ensemble cast.”

Sophomore Farrah Bojalad is charged with filling Caravaggio's shoes at first singles.

The Quakers' stingiest competition, as usual, figures to come from a couple miles down the road. Sewickley Academy has appeared in the past five WPIAL title matches, winning three.

The Panthers' Amy Cheng and Jappman Monga won the WPIAL doubles title as juniors last season, and teammate Sydney Miggantz qualified for the PIAA singles tournament as a junior last season.

Chris Adamski is a freelance writer.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.