ST. CLAIR SHORES — The goals put out by St. Clair Shores Lakeview girls tennis coach Colette Buckberry for her team going into its Division 2 regional tournament are clear.
“I’m looking for the team to play as hard as it can,” said Buckberry, whose team sat at 5-3, 3-2 Macomb Area Conference Gold Division at press time.
“We’re of similar skill level with a lot of the teams in our regional. We’re not going to give up on any points.”
The Huskies will play in a regional set for 8:30 a.m. May 16, hosted by Grosse Pointe North. Teams in the regional are Lakeview, Warren Woods Tower, Grosse Pointe North, Port Huron High, Hamtramck High, Detroit Mumford, Detroit Osborne, Detroit Renaissance, Detroit East English Village Prep Academy and Detroit Western International.
Buckberry, in her fourth year with the program, said regular-season matches and tournaments have prepared the team well for the postseason. She said the experience players gained by competing in tough matches should serve the Huskies well.
One of those tournaments was the MAC Gold Divisional meet, which took place May 6. Lakeview finished fourth at the divisional meet, which was won by division-leader Sterling Heights High. Buckberry, who led Lakeview to division titles in 2012 and 2013, said matches like the divisional meet have shown her players how to battle through tough situations. She also said the team has improved drastically from the start of the season.
“I think our team is working harder than ever,” Buckberry said. “They’ve learned a lot this season. We have a lot of young girls. We’ve played in a lot of tough matches, and they’re constantly working as hard as they can.”
One of those hard-working players is senior No. 1 singles player Rachel Stacheit, who played at No.3 doubles in 2013.
“Her outstanding work ethic, combined with her stepping into the No. 1 singles position, has shown the other girls they can really do anything and improve rapidly over a short period of time,” Buckberry said.
Buckberry said her team has shown mental toughness, which is key in tennis.
“There’s a pro who said that tennis is 90 percent mental,” Buckberry said. “You have to believe in yourself. If you don’t believe in yourself, you won’t have success. You have to go out there with the belief that you can win.”