Westlake 2013 graduate Sydney Thomas, who is now a member of the Prairie View team, was also in action in singles and doubles competition.
“Last year, I was here in the recruiting part of the tournament just watching all of these teams play,” Thomas said. “When I first came here and got off the bus, I was like ‘wow this is crazy. I was just in their position and now I’m on a college team that I was watching play.’”
Even though it hasn’t been that long since Thomas played at Westlake, she is fully aware of how the preparation is different and relaying that message to her younger sister Monica Thomas, a Westlake junior.
“I’ve been telling her it’s completely different,” Thomas said. “We are always working. Don’t take high school lightly. We used to do training and we used to think it was hard. That is a warm up compared to what we do now.”
With the tennis season still months away, Monica Thomas, also a member of the South Fulton USTA Junior Team, is preparing for the Junior National Tournament in October.
Sydney Thomas also spoke about how the bond with teammates is much tighter.
“It’s a lot different than high school,” she said. “It’s definitely more of a team thing. They’re just not my teammates. They are like my sisters. We do everything together. We eat together--every meal. It’s nice. I like it.”
During her final season at Westlake, Thomas helped the Lady Lions advance to the second round of the Class AAAAAA playoffs.
“I think I’m holding my own pretty much,” Thomas said. “I was nervous at first but I got into it and I got more comfortable. The pressure is different.”